Every driver must share the road with big trucks. Unfortunately, a collision with a big truck is very dangerous as they are twenty times the size and weight of most other motor vehicles. Because of the immense size and weight of big trucks, those involved in trucking accidents frequently sustain serious personal injuries and even death.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (“NHTSA”) reported in 2018, there were 4,678 fatalities due to collisions with large trucks, up by almost 1% from the number that died in 2017. In addition, they reported that fatalities increased for the fourth consecutive year.
What are the six most common causes of truck accidents?
Accidents involving big trucks are most often the result of a truck driver’s negligence. The following are the six most common causes of big truck accidents due to the carelessness or negligence of a big truck driver or trucking company.
- Driver error: Driver error is the leading cause of trucking accidents. The driver can become fatigued, inattentive, distracted, or drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Any of these behaviors can affect the driver’s ability to react appropriately to dangers on the highway.
- Truck equipment failure: Truck equipment failure is the second most common cause of truck accidents. Mechanical failures occur when there is a faulty design or installation of truck parts, such as the braking system, defective tires, or the lack of reverse-detection warning devices.
- Overloaded cargo and improperly loaded trucks: A truck that is carrying more than its freight allowance becomes more difficult to handle, increasing the chance of an accident. If the load is not evenly balanced, with its weight properly distributed across the truck, the truck can topple over, spilling its contents on the road creating a debris hazard for other motorists.
- Poorly maintained trucks: A poorly maintained truck is a dangerous truck, yet the companies responsible for truck maintenance do not always check to see that everything is in proper working order. This can result in brake or engine failures which could then lead to an accident.
- Poor weather conditions: It is very difficult for a big rig to take evasive action or to quickly come to a stop in poor weather conditions because of their weight. Some truckers, because they are not well-trained, or because they are in a rush to get to their destination, ignore the limitations of their vehicle and end up causing an accident.
- Lack of truck driving skills: Driving a big rig takes education, skill, and experience. Sadly, it is not very difficult to obtain a commercial truck driver’s license which puts inexperienced drivers on the road. In some instances, trucking companies do not train or vet their drivers sufficiently or are not in compliance with the regulations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (“FMCSA”).
If you are the victim of a trucking accident caused by the carelessness or negligence of a big truck driver or trucking company, please give Alexander & Associates, LLC, a call. We have a great deal of experience dealing with such accidents and would like to help you in any way possible.
If you have any questions about this article or any other questions related to personal injury law, please call us toll free at 1-800-529-1333. Our personal injury consultations are always free.
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