How Are Truck Accidents Caused?

driver viewing truck accident through car windshield

Auto accidents occur all the time and as a result are, unfortunately, one of the leading causes of injury in the United States. More than 6 million car accidents occur each year, injuring over 3 million people and causing permanent injuries to 2 million drivers. Some of the most dangerous road accidents involve trucks.

Truck accidents can be caused by some of the same factors that cause car accidents. Speeding, for example, is one of the most common contributing factors, as it not only reduces the amount of time a driver has to brake or react to a road hazard, but it can also cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles.

Other common causes of truck accidents that contribute to all auto accidents include:

  • Distracted driving: This is considered any kind of driving that causes drivers to lose focus on the road and their surroundings but often implies texting or talking on the phone while driving. When drivers are distracted, they may not be able to respond to things like slowed or stopped traffic or stop signs until it’s too late. Distracted drivers can also fail to notice important traffic signs, like notice of construction work or speed limit signs.
  • Reckless driving: Reckless driving is any driving considered to be in direct violation of traffic laws or driving that puts other lives in danger, such as running red lights, speeding, and failing to yield to the right of way. One common form of reckless driving is failing to signal or check blind spots before changing lanes.
  • Impaired driving: Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol not only reduces driver reaction times, but also enables drivers to make risky decisions, such as speeding on turns or changing lanes abruptly.

There are, however, some causes that are unique to trucks. Other entities besides drivers can contribute to truck accidents, as most trucks belong to companies and are regulated in their own industry.

Some unique causes of truck accidents include:

  • Fatigued driving: Commercial truck drivers drive long distances to transport their cargo and often drive overnight. Though they’re required by law to take meal and rest breaks, many still drive while drowsy and lose focus on the road. Some drivers fall asleep at the wheel and drift over lanes or lose control of their vehicles entirely.
  • Loading or cargo errors: Cargo loaders or companies can be held responsible for truck accidents when they load trucks improperly, such as by failing to secure barrels, crates, or boxes. A truck can tip over if it’s unbalanced, or cargo can fly off the truck and hit other vehicles.
  • Employer negligence: Federal regulations are in place to monitor trucking companies and ensure that they maintain vehicles on a regular basis. Additionally, trucking companies must properly train their truck drivers, vet new hires, and make sure their drivers aren’t violating hours of service limitations. If companies are found to be in violation of these regulations in any way, they can be held responsible for negligence.
  • Poor truck maintenance: Manufacturers can be held liable for damages if their errors or defects contribute to accidents. Examples include defective tires, steering issues, faulty brakes, and suspension problems.

Handling Catastrophic Injuries

It’s known that truck accidents often result in serious injuries and fatalities due to the sheer size and weight of trucks involved, from 18-wheelers to tractor-trailers. Catastrophic injuries differ from injuries like whiplash, sprains, and fractures in that they can be long-lasting and permanent, often transforming the way a person lives their life. Common catastrophic injuries include burns, loss of limbs, spinal cord and neck injuries like paralysis, and head and brain injuries. Catastrophic injuries may require you to quit your job and seek additional medical treatment like physical therapy, equipment, and more.

Because these costs can add up to tens of thousands of dollars over time, you need to choose a firm that has the experience and resources needed to secure the maximum amount of financial compensation possible under the law. With a focus on catastrophic injuries and complex injury cases, Thorp Law can be trusted to handle your claim after you’ve been injured in a truck accident. We’re backed by a long track record of success that we can use to achieve your legal goals and provide you with a brighter future.

Call us if you wish to recover damages like medical bills, lost wages and earning capacity, pain and suffering, property damage, and more. You shouldn’t have to pay out of pocket after an accident caused by a negligent driver or some other entity. Allow our truck attorney to pursue justice on your behalf.

Call Thorp Law today for a free consultation at (919) 373-3390, or contact us online. You don’t pay us a dime until we win your case.