Who is At Fault in Your Trucking Accident?
A commercial trucking accident is more complicated than a typical auto accident because additional parties are involved in the crash. And with those additional interested parties, there are also additional parties who may be held liable for damages and losses.
Potentially liable parties for a truck accident lawsuit include the following:
- Government entities and local road maintenance departments.
- Loaders and shippers.
- Maintenance and repair companies.
- Parts manufacturers.
- Truck drivers.
- Truck manufacturers.
- Trucking companies.
While the evidence will determine who was ultimately at fault for the truck accident, a truck driver cannot point to a blind spot as a reason for the collision. Yes, semi-trucks have more significant blind spots than most other motor vehicles on the road, but they are given no special considerations because of that fact. All drivers must be mindful of their blind spots while operating their vehicle, whether they are driving a small car or a large truck.
What Are the ‘Danger Zones’ for Motorists Driving Close to 18-Wheelers?
Commercial-size semi-trucks have four blind spots. A blind spot is an area where the driver cannot see directly or by using their mirrors. Truck blind spots are more significant than the typical blind spots found in regular-sized cars, vans, and trucks because of the sheer size of a semi-truck and its trailer.
The back blind spot is the space directly at the tractor-trailer’s rear. This blind spot stretches 30 feet behind the big rig.
The front blind spot is almost as bad as the rear blind spot. The blind spot in front of the semi-truck stretches approximately 20 feet beyond the front hood of the truck. Also, please remember that large trucks need more space and time to come to a complete stop, meaning that this area is perilous to go unnoticed.
The left blind spot on the driver’s side of the truck cab stretches about one lane to the left and back. This blind area is approximately 20-30 feet. If you cannot see the truck driver in their mirror, they cannot see your motor vehicle.
The right blind spot – the truck’s passenger side – is similar to the left side, but the blind spot is larger. The truck driver may be unable to see cars in two separate lanes of traffic.
Why Would a Truck Driver Fail to Check Their Blind Spots?
Like any other motorist, truck drivers must check their blind spots before taking turns, changing lanes, or backing up. Failure to do so is negligent driving. So, why do truck drivers sometimes fail to check their blind spots?
Reasons that blind spot trucking accidents happen include:
- Distracted driving. We’re all vulnerable to distractions while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, whether it’s from cell phones, text messages, advertisements, eating, drinking, or talking with passengers in the cab.
- Driver fatigue. Remember, many of these drivers are on tight deadlines, and their bosses may not allow them to get the rest they need.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Drunk driving or driving under the influence can dramatically alter a driver’s reaction time and judgment.
- Reckless driving. General carelessness could be the simplest cause of all. A lapse in judgment, a skipped step, or a bad decision could cost lives, though.
What Are Common Truck Accident Injuries?
Regularly seen trucking accident injuries include the following:
- Broken bones.
- Catastrophic injuries.
- Head and neck injuries.
- Internal injuries.
- Loss of limbs.
- Spinal cord injuries.
- Traumatic brain injuries.
- Wrongful death.
How to Drive Safely On the Same Road as a Big Rig Truck?
Rear-end collisions and sideswipes are the two most common types of truck accidents. At least in some of these cases, the accident happened in the first place because a vehicle disappeared into a blind spot.
Here are a few tips for avoiding blind-spot-related accidents:
- Do not cut off semi-trucks. They may not see you at all.
- Maintain a safe distance from behind an 18-wheeler so you do not disappear into the truck driver’s rear blind spot.
- Stay well ahead of semi-trucks, if possible.
- Try to pass on the left side of a semi-truck, where the truck driver has more visibility.
How Can Truck Accident Lawyers Help You Pursue Financial Compensation?
You do not need to settle for the initial offer from the truck company’s insurance provider. An experienced truck accident lawyer can assist you in pursuing the maximum compensation from all liable parties.
If awarded, the settlement will take the form of economic and non-economic damages to make up for the losses you suffered.
Economic damages may include financial recovery for your medical bills, funeral costs, physical therapy expenses, lost wages, lost future income, and property damage. Non-economic damages may include compensation for pain and suffering, mental anguish, disability, disfigurement, and wrongful death.
Schedule a Free Case Review with Experienced Truck Accident Attorneys
Truck accident cases are more complex than your typical car accident case. Among the many complications is the fact that the trucking company likely employs a team of lawyers whose entire responsibility is ensuring that their employer is the least exposed to financial injury possible. So, considering what you are up against, it is highly advisable that you seek professional legal counsel to help you through such a difficult case.
Babcock Injury Lawyers has extensive experience representing clients with personal injury claims. To learn more about the legal services we offer, please contact our law firm to schedule your free consultation today. You may call us at (225) 240-4053.