Some of the most severe accidents that occur on our California highways involve big-rig vehicles. Semi-trucks are much larger than other vehicles on the road. Such vehicles are more difficult to operate. Blind spots regarding trucks mean truck drivers need to take more precautions when making lane changes. And it is extremely difficult to bring a truck under control when it skids or swerves.
The injuries that accommodate truck accidents often involve injuries such as paralysis or even death. Because an accident can be catastrophic, we need to make sure operators are qualified to drive trucks, and the truck receives proper maintenance.
In November, one insurer released an article outlining some of the most common reasons that truck accidents occur. These reasons include:
- Mistakes when maneuvering the truck. As mentioned above, trucks are challenging to operate. When a truck enters into a curve at too great of speed, it will be extremely difficult to keep it under control. This could also lead to the truck turning over. Truck drivers need to take particular precautions on roadways designed for much smaller vehicles. It can be especially difficult for trucks to turn at intersections where there is a great deal of pedestrian traffic.
- Distracted driving. Distractions cause accidents for operators of much smaller vehicles. A distraction for a truck driver including the answering of a cellphone is even more dangerous. Trucks cannot stop as quickly. If a truck driver is not paying attention to the road, the operator may not be able to stop the truck in time to avoid an accident.
- Truck driver fatigue. Operation of a truck is already difficult. Adding on long hours while driving many miles on highways leads to driver fatigue. Sometimes, employers require truck drivers to take on long shifts. And fatigue leads to deadly mistakes on the road.
- Truck maintenance issues. Trucks require regular and frequent maintenance. According to a study, poor maintenance and malfunctions lead to around 10 percent of all truck accidents.
- Poor judgment. The mistakes truck drivers make can increase the chances of a crash. Such mistakes can also compound the consequences of an accident. Due to difficulties in operation, truck drivers need to take precautions and do what is necessary to avoid mistakes.
When injuries occur, personal injury attorneys will take the necessary steps to hold truckers, trucking companies and their insurers responsible. In some cases, the manufacturer needs to answer for truck crashes as well. Without accountability, accidents will continue.