Trucks and 18-wheels are extremely large and heavy and must be the most cautious of all vehicles on the road. Unfortunately, transportation companies are notorious for encouraging their drivers to continue driving all night or to go against the laws that regulate them.Therefore, truck drivers can cause accidents that cause catastrophic injuries and death to passengers in other vehicles. At Zehl& Associates, our 18 wheeler accident attorney can represent you if you were injured in an 18 wheeler accident.
Causes of Truck Accidents
Although not all 18-wheeler accidents are the fault of the truck driver, there are many ways that a driver and / or the trucking company can be at fault.
Here are some of the common causes of truck accidents:
• The inattention of the driver. Like other drivers, truckers can stop looking at the road for a moment or be using their cell phones, with potentially dangerous consequences.
• Driver fatigue. Federal law specifies how many hours a trucker can drive in a 24-hour period. If the driver exceeds this regulation and causes an accident, the driver can be held liable by an attorney. Furthermore, the trucking company may be at fault, especially if the company was aware that drivers were exceeding their permitted driving hours.
• Unsafe cargo. Sometimes a truck load is more dangerous during an accident than the truck itself. If a truck is overloaded or the load is not secure, you put other drivers at risk.
• Drug or alcohol intoxication. Although drivers are supposed to take substance use tests on a regular basis, some drivers get behind the wheel after using or using drugs.
• Often behind the direct cause of the accident there is another factor: the transport company. Businesses can be held liable for the actions of their drivers. When companies fail to properly train drivers, do not maintain equipment properly, or do not keep proper records, the company can be held liable in a truck accident lawsuit.
Types of Texas Truck Accidents
In 2013, 359 people lost their lives in a truck accident in Texas, according to the State Department of Transportation. About 3,000 people were seriously injured in truck accidents during that year.
18-wheelers are less maneuverable than passenger cars, and they also take longer to brake. Tractor-trailer accidents take many forms, and they occur for many reasons.
Among the most dangerous accidents are rear-end collisions, due to the mass of the truck. Due to its size, a tractor takes longer to stop than a normal vehicle. If a driver is not looking at the road and has to stop suddenly, any delay can cause the truck to crash into vehicles stopped in front of him, causing serious injury or even death to passengers in other vehicles.
Rollover occurs when a truck loses traction, often due to weather issues, turns sideways, and tips over. In addition to the obvious risk of collision, a rollover accident can spill potentially dangerous cargo.
A scissor accident occurs when the trailer rocks outward perpendicular to the front of the truck. This can span multiple lanes of traffic. This is often the result of hard braking.
Rear ramming of a truck occurs when a tractor comes to a sudden stop and a car behind it is unable to stop in time. Because the truck is much taller, the car may end up wedged under the trailer.
Accidents can also be caused by equipment malfunction, such as failed brakes or a faulty cargo hold. A truck can be very difficult to control after a tire blowout. If a trucking company does not maintain its equipment as required by law, it increases the chances of a mechanical failure.