Truck Accidents in America: Major Causes and Damages
Summary: When it comes to auto accidents in the United States, trucks are responsible for a massive number of road accident injuries. According to statistics from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 5,000 people die as a result of motor vehicle accidents involving trucks every year.
When it comes to auto accidents in the United States, trucks are responsible
for a massive number of road accident injuries. According to statistics from the
U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 5,000 people
die as a result of motor vehicle accidents involving trucks every year.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier
Safety Administration, more than 475,000 truck-related crashes are reported
to law enforcement every year, with more than 100,000 of those resulting in
injuries to truck occupants, other drivers or passengers on the road, or
pedestrians. Truck accidents can be extremely dangerous and life-threatening.
If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident involving a truck, you can contact
an auto accident lawyer for guidance on how you can seek compensation.
Common Causes of U.S. Truck Accidents
Driving under the influence and other types of impaired driving. Driving
under the influence (DUI) is a significant problem in America, in which people
choose to drive after drinking alcohol or abusing drugs. It is especially
dangerous for truck drivers to drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
because of how difficult it is to operate and control a fully loaded truck.
Accidents involving DUI are often deadly and can cause extensive damages. In
these situations, criminal liability usually applies as well, as it is illegal to drive
under the influence in every jurisdiction in the country.
Distracted driving. About 8% of truck accidents that occur in the United States
are the result of distracted driving. A driver is considered to be distracted when
they perform tasks that take their attention away from the road and from
operating their vehicle. This may include talking on the phone, texting, eating,
drinking coffee, reading maps, or any other activity that decreases the amount
of thought the driver puts toward operating their vehicle. Without paying
proper attention, a truck driver may fail to notice others on the road, such as
bikes, cars, and pedestrians. If anyone has the misfortune of entering a
distracted driver’s blind spot, tragedy can strike if the driver fails to take
Driver fatigue or medical conditions. Every year in the United States,
approximately 13% of motor vehicle accidents involving trucks are attributable
to driver fatigue. When you are at the wheel of a truck, it is essential that you
remain awake and alert. However, driver fatigue and medical conditions are
also common causes of serious truck accidents. In many cases, truck drivers are
required to work long hours, and driving for long stretches can cause extreme
drowsiness. If a driver is unable or unwilling to rest when their body requires it,
they may not be able to keep their eyes open and can fall asleep while at the
wheel. This often results in truck crashes, either into stationary objects or
other vehicles on the road. Dizziness and loss of consciousness from other
health conditions can cause similarly devastating results.
Inclement weather conditions. In the case of some accidents involving trucks,
the truck driver plays little to no role in causing the resulting crash. Poor
weather can create circumstances in which no driver can completely avoid an
accident. Operating a truck in snow, ice, or rain conditions can be especially
challenging for a driver because the roads may become slick. On a slippery
road surface, it is easy to lose control of a truck, even at safe operating speeds.
Mechanical failures. Because of the amount of time they spend on the road
and the wear and tear that they endure, trucks require much more frequent
maintenance than other motor vehicles. If not properly maintained, trucks can
experience major mechanical problems that could lead to accidents on the
road, especially if the brakes or steering fail.
Improper loading. Inherent in commercial trucking is the need for these
vehicles to carry and transport heavy materials. Workers must balance the
loads properly, because imbalanced cargo can make it exponentially more
difficult for the truck driver to maneuver the vehicle. This is especially the case
at highway speeds. Poorly loaded trucks are deadly because drivers cannot
shift their vehicles out of harm’s way quickly enough.
If you are the victim of a truck accident due to no fault of your own, a truck
accident lawyer San Antonio trusts can guide you through the legal process of
seeking the compensation for your injuries that you deserve. An experienced
attorney can remain by your side and fight tirelessly for a favorable result.
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