Trucks are commonly seen on our country’s interstates and highways. These vehicles are crucial to our economy as they carry goods/cargo from one destination to another to meet the demands for goods nationwide.
But needless to say, trucks pose a high risk of accidents to vehicles sharing the road with them. Due to their sheer size and weight, accidents with large trucks or tractor-trailers can cause serious injuries to small-size vehicle drivers and passengers alike and considerable property damage.
The damage to the property and severity of injuries largely depends on the type of truck accidents. Some common types of truck accidents include:
Truck rollovers can prove to be deadly for truck drivers. These accidents occur when the driver loses control over their vehicle. The loss of control can be because of different reasons such as speeding, steep incline or decline, the truck being overloaded with cargo, or taking a curve too fast. However, tire blowout is one of the most common causes of rollover accidents in 18 wheelers. Many rollover truck accidents are preventable if the drivers and their trucking companies comply with federal and state regulations.
Tractor-trailers and semi-trucks have two parts—the trailer and the cab. Below the trailer’s forward area that connects with the cab lies a hitch. This hitch is basically a movable joint. It pivots when a tractor-trailer makes a turn. So, a jackknife truck accident happens when the trailer continues to move, and it pivots onto the hitch. Thus, it resembles a folding jackknife when the trailer of the truck swings towards the cab.
One of the most common reasons for such an accident is improper braking. It happens when the truck driver brakes quickly, which makes the truck skid, thereby increasing the chances of a jackknife.
Rear-End Truck Accident
If a driver of an 18 wheeler, which could weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded and driving at 60mph, fails to realize the stopping distance needed, they can expose themselves to the risk of rear-end collision. This is because the heavy weight and massive size of an 18 wheeler will require more time and distance to stop than a lightweight vehicle. Therefore, when a car driving in front of an 18 wheeler or a heavy-duty truck stops suddenly, maneuvers, or makes a quick turn, it can be difficult for truck drivers to slow down and stop immediately.
And that is exactly why the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) recommends the drivers of 18 wheelers and semi-trucks to leave at least 5 to 6-second gap to minimize the risk of rear-end accidents.
This type of accident is said to be an extension of truck rear-end collision. Such an accident may occur when a small vehicle hits the back of the truck which is near the same level as the vehicle’s top thereby causing the car to go under the rear trailer of the truck and get lodged. Hence, the name— underride accident.
Just like rear-end accidents, underride crashes may occur when a driver is impaired, fatigued, or distracted.
T-Bone or Side Impact Collision
As the name suggests, a T-bone or side-impact collision occurs when the driver of a truck strikes the side of a vehicle. In other words, this type of accident occurs from the side rather than the front or rear of a vehicle. Here it is important to understand that T-bone accidents can cause severe injuries to the passengers in the vehicle. This is because when a truck crashes into the rear or front of a vehicle, you have the bumper and engine compartments to protect you. However, if it strikes your car from the side you don’t have such compartments for protection. The only protection you have is the door. Thus injuries can be severe in nature.
Side impact accidents may occur because of the driver’s failure to yield, driving under the influence of drugs, or running red light. Moreover, the risk of such accidents is also high when truck drivers turn across several lanes of traffic.
Head-on Truck Accident
A head-on accident occurs when the front end of a vehicle strikes with the front end of a truck. Such an accident mostly occurs at high speeds. In a head-on collision, the truck driver may lose control of the truck and swerves into oncoming traffic. This usually occurs because the driver is:
- Distracted while driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Fatigued because of demanding schedules and long hours of driving without any rest breaks
A wide turn is when the truck driver tries to steer or swing left to make a right turn. This maneuver becomes dangerous for the vehicles and pedestrians if the driver is unaware of the rear traffic and the surroundings on the right.
Hire a Truck Accident Lawyer in North Carolina and South Carolina for Case Representation
If you or a loved one has been severely injured in a truck accident due to the truck driver’s negligence, then get in touch with us today. At the Law Office of Jason E. Taylor P.C., our experienced truck accident lawyers in North Carolina and South Carolina can help you navigate through the legal complexities that are involved in a truck accident. We strive to see that the process goes smoothly and fight for you to get fully compensated for the losses and injuries incurred.
Our lawyers can handle all aspects of the case while you can focus on your recovery. Contact us today. Let us investigate your case to determine the most crucial questions like how did the accident occur, what caused it and why. Answers to all these questions can help us establish a strong case against the liable party and for the compensation you deserve.