Texas roadways are traveled by 18-wheelers, tanker trucks, dump trucks, garbage trucks and other large and heavy trucks. Given the size and weight of these trucks, truck drivers and the companies that they carry goods or materials for have a legal duty to be free from carelessness and negligence. If you’re involved in an accident with one of these trucks, the harm that they can cause can be catastrophic. You’ll be in need of a knowledgeable, experienced, aggressive and successful truck accident attorney right away.
Some Common Causes of Truck Accidents
A fully loaded 18-wheeler can be more than 70 feet in length and weigh up to 80,000 pounds. On dry pavement, that tractor-trailer can take between 20 and 40 percent longer to come to a complete halt than a passenger vehicle. The stopping distance can be increased dramatically if the road is wet, snowy or icy. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has studied more than 120,000 large truck crashes, and it concluded that about 87 percent of those crashes were attributable to driver negligence. Here are some examples of truck driver negligence:
- Speeding can cause the increase stopping distance.
- Driving too fast for traffic or weather conditions.
- Distracted driving like talking on a cell phone, texting or using a navigational device while driving.
- Drowsy or fatigued driving. Large truck drivers must follow hours of service rules that have been set by the FMCSA. They’re under tight delivery schedules, and sometimes, drivers ignore them.
- Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or a combination of the two.
- Blind spot accidents during lane changes. Large trucks have huge blind spots. If you can’t see the driver in his or her mirror, he or she can’t see you either.
Trucking Company Liability
There are times when not only the driver can be liable for a crash. The trucking company that the driver is hauling for can be held liable too. Here are some examples:
- Bad tires, brakes or both. You’ll see tire debris on any interstate highway.
- Improperly loaded cargo. Overweight or improperly loaded trucks. These factor into stopping or rollover issues. Truck drivers can easily lose control of an overweight or improperly loaded truck and trailer.
- Falling debris. If a trucking company fails to properly load a trailer, it can tip and cause cargo to spill onto the roadway. That creates a substantial risk of harm for anybody around it.
The Odds Aren’t With You
There are a wide variety of different truck accidents. They include rear-end collisions, head-on collisions, underrides, rollovers and jackknifing. Over the years, we’ve successfully represented injury victims in all sorts of of truck accidents. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, drivers and occupants of passenger vehicles who are injured or killed about 66 percent of the time are involved in large truck accidents. About 17 percent are pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists. Only about 16 percent are the truck drivers themselves. The physics and odds just aren’t in your favor in any large truck accident.
If you were seriously injured in a large truck accident, or if a family member was victim of a truck accident, don’t give an opposing insurance company a statement of any kind. Contact a truck accident attorney at our offices as soon as possible after the accident for a free consultation and case evaluation. Evidence can disappear, recollections of events can fade and witnesses can vanish. We know that you’ll be under tremendous financial and emotional strain. There is nothing that can eliminate the hurt and pain caused by a truck accident. However, compensation can help. Call our law offices today at any of our convenient locations to get a free consultation.
Arlington (817) 522-4451
Addison (972) 564-8108
Denton (940) 222-4060
Dallas (972) 362-6848
Garland (214) 572-2251
Fort Worth (817) 764-1375
Cedar Hill (972) 338-9427
McKinney (469) 522-3688
Lewisville (972) 354-4605
Frisco (972) 725-7681
Grapevine (817) 835-8677
Irving (972) 354-4610
Keller (817) 204-0904
Plano (972) 354-4602
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