Commercial semi trucks are often seen as large and potentially dangerous vehicles on highways and roads. This is because the injuries sustained in a semi truck accident are often more severe due to the size and weight difference between semi trucks and other types of motor vehicles.
Additionally, a seemingly insignificant driver error that often goes without consequence in smaller cars may be magnified when the driver of a fully loaded eighteen-wheeler acts out of negligence.
Of all of the possible causes of semi-truck accidents the one that is most commonly seen is driver error. Factors that may lead to these risks and inhibit the driver’s ability to react in a timely manner to potential dangers on the road include:
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Driving while distracted
- Misjudging the speed of other vehicles
- Failing to pay attention
- Aggressively driving
- Following vehicles too closely
- Driving too fast for weather or traffic conditions
- Traveling off the road
- Crossing the lines of road lanes
- Falling asleep behind the wheel
Truck equipment failure
Secondly, equipment failures can include manufacturing and design errors such as defective tires or a lack of reverse-detection warning devices. Equipment failure may also be the result of poor or inefficient maintenance to the tires or brakes. According to the FMCSA, 30% of semi trucks involved in crashes were due to failing brakes. The FMCSA requires every trucking company and driver to ensure that regular inspections and regular maintenance is done for their fleet, as well as pre-trip inspections to make sure that all parts are functioning as intended.
Weather and road conditions
Weather conditions may severely affect a driver’s ability to operate the vehicle. Because of the fact that the loads are extremely heavy in the trucks as well as the semi trucks themselves, braking distance often increases in poor weather. Drivers are often unable to quickly stop or easily steer, and they may fail to account for these limitations. Additionally, in order to keep a time schedule, a semi truck driver may not slow down when needed, such as in heavy traffic, around sharp turns, or in construction zones.
Loading methods that are incorrect
It is essential that the trailer load is distributed properly or it may malfunction due to the uneven load. Improper loading commonly results in the truck being off-balance and this may cause the vehicle to roll over. Failing to adequately load the vehicle can also cause the cargo or goods to fall off the truck and onto nearby cars or onto the roadways.
Usually, the exact cause of a truck accident is not immediately apparent. For those who have been involved in a semi truck accident, it may be beneficial to seek legal counsel from an experienced attorney who can investigate the details of the case and determine the cause. Additionally, an expert Georgia truck accident injury attorney can help the victim and the family determine who should be held accountable for the wreck, as there may be more than one responsible party.
Contact us today for a free consultation
If you or someone you love was injured in a truck accident and you would like to learn more about pursuing a claim for compensation, Van Sant Law, LLC can help. We will provide you with a free case evaluation and help determine if you have a valid case. We work on a contingency fee basis, which means that you will not be required to pay any of our legal expenses unless we can make a recovery on your behalf. For more information and to schedule your free case evaluation, please call us today at (404) 991-5950 or fill out our free, no obligation online contact form.