The trucking industry is quickly growing in the U.S. because over 70% of consumer goods make their way to their final destination by large trucks. Trucking can be a lucrative business and a good source of income for drivers, but the industry has one of the highest fatality rates in the U.S. There has been a 52% increase in truck accident deaths since 2009.
Overwhelmingly, truck accident death victims are passengers of other vehicles and not the drivers of the truck themselves. 68% of all truck accident fatalities are passengers in other vehicles. Even more alarming, 74% of all fatal injury crashes involve a large truck.
Despite what you may think, most truck accidents occur on major roads and not highways or interstates. As a passenger in a much smaller vehicle, you must take precautions to protect yourself and your passengers from large truck accidents. But, even if you take all the right precautions, accidents can still happen.
Common Causes of Large Truck Accidents
As mentioned above, large truck accidents are on the rise in the U.S. Large trucks are still the best way to move consumer goods across the country. As demand for products increases, especially due to the pandemic, more and more trucks are on the roads.
If you are traveling on a roadway with large trucks, it is important to keep in mind that trucks cannot maneuver as quickly as a car and have much poorer visibility. Therefore, as a passenger vehicle driver, you are expected to use extra caution when traveling alongside large trucks. However, you can be doing everything right and still find yourself injured after an accident with a large truck.
Critical events refer to the circumstances that made an accident unavoidable. The FMSCA identified three major critical events that led to collisions with vehicles.
- In 32% of the studied cases, the large truck veered out of their travel lane and into the lane of another car.
- Loss of control due to driving too fast for conditions, mechanical failure, shifting cargo, or poor road conditions led to accidents 29% of the time.
- Rear-end collisions with another vehicle in the truck’s lane accounted for 22% of accidents.
The critical reasons for large truck accidents refer to the immediate reason or immediate failure that led to an accident. The study listed critical reasons for the accident-related to the driver in four categories:
- The first, “non-performance,” refers to actions in which the driver was physically impaired and unable to respond appropriately. Falling asleep at the wheel or being disabled by some other physical impairment, like a seizure or heart attack, is also included in this category. These types of actions accounted for 12% of truck-related accidents.
- The second category is “recognition” and refers to accidents caused by the driver being distracted or inattentive. These actions accounted for 28% of accidents.
- “Decision” is the third category and accounts for the largest share of accidents at 38%. This refers to the driver making the wrong choice or a poor decision that led to the accident. Speeding, driving too fast for conditions, and following too closely fall under this category.
- The final category is “performance” and refers to a driver who is panicked or unable to exercise good directional control. This category makes up the smallest percentage of accidents at 9%.
In addition to these causations, the report found that there were hundreds of associated factors that impacted whether or not a collision would take place and how severe the accident would be. It is important to note that the associated factors refer to both the driver of the large truck and the driver of the vehicle, as not all large truck wrecks are the fault of the semi-truck driver.
The top associated factors are:
- Driver fatigue
- Braking problems
- Inattention, poor attention, or distraction
- Drug and alcohol use, including prescription drug use
- Driving too fast or driving too fast for conditions
- Traffic congestion
- A previous crash (“rubbernecking”)
- Being unfamiliar with the roadway
- Roadway issues (construction, potholes, shifting lanes, etc.).
- Failing to yield where appropriate
- Illegal handling or maneuvering of the vehicle
How Can a Truck Accident Attorney Help Me After an Accident?
You may be wondering if you have grounds to sue after an accident with a large truck that left you with injuries. In many cases, the answer is yes. But, you will want an experienced truck accident attorney to take the lead on your case and help you develop a winning legal strategy to recover compensation for all of your injuries, losses, and damages.
The most important thing that a truck accident attorney can do is help you determine liability in your case. If a truck driver loses control of their vehicle, they put everyone around them at a high risk of injury because of both the size and weight of their truck and their inability to quickly maneuver the rig to safety. Large truck accidents can involve multiple liable parties, including the truck driver and the truck driver’s company.
Ali Awad, the CEO Lawyer, offers no-obligation consultations of truck accident cases. You have nothing to lose by calling his office and discussing the details of your case. This can help you determine your next steps and course of action after you have been injured in a truck accident.
Proving Truck Driver Negligence
Your attorney’s most important role will be determining who is liable for your accident and actively pursuing a settlement with the insurance company based on the facts of the case that you provide during your consultation.
A major part of determining fault is establishing negligence. In order to prove that the truck driver was acting negligently, your attorney will gather evidence to establish:
- The driver of the large truck had a duty of care to other drivers. Truck drivers must take reasonable actions to prevent accidents.
- The driver breached or failed to meet the duty of care established, and this action or failure to act resulted in your accident.
- Finally, your attorney must draw a link between the accident and your injuries. They must show that your injuries, damages, and losses are the direct result of the accident caused by the truck driver’s negligence.
By proving negligence, your lawyer will establish fault in your truck accident case. However, the driver may not be fully or wholly to blame for the accident. In some circumstances, your truck accident lawyer will go after the trucking company, as well.
Trucking Accident Lawyer
Ali Awad is also known as the CEO Lawyer because he turned a small, local firm into an eight-figure business in just three short years. Ali Awad is a fierce negotiator that doesn’t back down from a fight with tough insurance companies. If you have the CEO Lawyer representing you, you can be sure that he will not accept a lowball offer and will take your case to court if needed.
The CEO Lawyer is followed by millions on social media because he is a trusted source of sound legal advice. If you have questions about an accident with a large truck in which you were injured, call his firm today at (888) 307-1912 for a no-obligation consultation of your case.