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Types of Truck Accidents

By Walton Law APCJune 17, 2024No Comments
Types of Truck Accidents

After a truck accident, you know firsthand the devastating impact it can have on your life. Truck accidents can result in severe injuries, property damage, and emotional trauma.

Regardless of the type of truck accident that injured you, hire an experienced Murrieta truck accident attorney to determine how your accident happened, who you can hold responsible, and the most effective strategy to secure compensation for your damages.

Timing is important in truck accident investigations, so never delay in consulting a truck accident lawyer near you for free and seeking the compensation you deserve.

Types of Truck Accidents

Jackknife Accidents

One of the most common types of truck accidents is a jackknife. In a jackknife accident, the trailer of a truck swings out to the side, creating a V shape with the truck.

This often happens when the truck’s wheels lock up or the driver brakes abruptly. Jackknife accidents can be extremely dangerous, as they can involve multiple vehicles and lead to severe injuries or fatalities.

Rear-End Accidents

Rear-end accidents involving trucks are another prevalent type of truck accident. These accidents occur when a truck collides with the back of another vehicle.

Due to their size and weight, trucks can cause significant damage in rear-end accidents. Whiplash injuries and spinal cord injuries (SCI) are common in these types of accidents.

Underride Accidents

Underride accidents happen when a smaller vehicle collides with the rear or side of a truck and ends up underneath the truck’s trailer. These accidents can be catastrophic, often resulting in severe head injuries and decapitation.

Underride accidents are particularly dangerous because the smaller vehicle is vulnerable to being crushed or dragged by the truck.

Rollover Accidents

Truck Accidents

Truck rollover accidents occur when a truck tips onto its side or roof. These accidents can happen due to various factors, including speeding, sharp turns, improperly loaded cargo, and poor road conditions. Rollover accidents can lead to severe injuries for the truck driver and other motorists on the road.

Tire Blowouts

Tire blowouts are a common cause of truck accidents. When a truck’s tire suddenly bursts, it can cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle. This can result in a collision with other vehicles or objects on the road. Tire blowouts are often caused by improper tire maintenance, overloading, or manufacturing defects.

Wide Turn Collision

Trucks have a larger turning radius than smaller vehicles, making wide-turn collisions common. These accidents happen when a truck swings wide while turning and collides with vehicles in adjacent lanes. Due to their size, trucks can cause significant damage and injuries in wide-turn collisions.

Blind Spot Accidents

Trucks have large blind spots, also known as no-zones, where the driver’s visibility is limited. Blind spot accidents occur when a vehicle is in the truck’s blind spot and the truck driver fails to see it before changing lanes or making a turn. These accidents often result in serious injuries or fatalities.

Truck vs. Pedestrian Accidents

Truck accidents involving pedestrians can be catastrophic. Due to their size and weight, trucks can cause extensive injuries or fatalities when they collide with pedestrians. The high point of impact in these accidents often leads to severe head and spinal injuries.

Improper Cargo Loading Crashes

When cargo is not correctly loaded and secured on a truck, it can shift during transit, causing the truck to become unbalanced. This can lead to a loss of control and result in a crash. Improper cargo loading crashes can be caused by negligence, rush to meet deadlines, or failure to follow safety regulations.

Sideswipe Accidents

Sideswipe accidents occur when two vehicles traveling in the same direction make contact with each other. These accidents can happen when a truck drifts into another lane or fails to give enough space when passing another vehicle. Sideswipe accidents can lead to minor to significant vehicle damage and injuries.

Brake Failure Crashes

Brake failure is a potentially life-threatening issue for trucks. When a truck’s brakes fail, the driver may be unable to stop or slow down, causing a crash. Brake failure can be attributed to factors such as poor maintenance, manufacturing defects, or driver error.

Intersection Accidents

Truck accidents at intersections can result in serious injuries, often due to the truck’s size and visibility challenges. These accidents can occur when a truck fails to yield the right of way, runs a red light, or misjudges the timing of a turn. Intersection accidents may involve multiple vehicles and bystanders.

The Common Causes of Truck Accidents

Truck accidents can occur due to various factors, including:

  • Distracted Driving: Just like any other driver, truck drivers can also be distracted by texting, talking on the phone, eating, or even using onboard technology. However, due to the size and weight of the truck, any distraction can have severe consequences.
  • Fatigue: Truck drivers often have tight schedules and long hours on the road. Unfortunately, this can lead to driver fatigue, impairing their ability to stay alert and react promptly to potential hazards.
  • Speeding: Truck drivers may feel pressured to meet tight deadlines, leading them to exceed the speed limit. Speeding reduces the driver’s ability to control the truck, especially in adverse weather conditions or when unexpected obstacles appear.
  • Improper Truck Maintenance: Maintenance plays a vital role in ensuring the safe operation of a truck. Failure to perform routine maintenance tasks, such as checking brakes, tires, lights, and other essential components, can lead to accidents.
  • Unsafe Lane Changes: Trucks have larger blind spots compared to regular vehicles. If a truck driver fails to check their blind spots before changing lanes, they can collide with another vehicle, causing a potentially catastrophic accident.
  • Impaired Driving: Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a dangerous choice for any driver but becomes even more hazardous when operating a large truck. Impaired truck drivers may have slower reaction times, impaired judgment, and reduced coordination, significantly increasing the risk of an accident.
  • Poor Weather Conditions: Trucks can be more challenging to control in adverse weather conditions such as heavy rain, snow, or ice. Limited visibility and slippery roads increase the likelihood of accidents occurring. It’s the job and obligation of truck drivers to adjust their driving behaviors accordingly when there are poor road or weather conditions. If they don’t, they can be held liable in the event of an accident.

What Makes Trucks So Dangerous?

One key factor contributing to the danger of trucks on the road is their massive size and weight. Trucks are significantly larger and heavier than regular passenger vehicles, so the impact is often much more severe when a collision occurs.

The force of a truck hitting another vehicle can lead to catastrophic injuries, as the occupants of smaller vehicles are at a considerable disadvantage.

In addition to their size, trucks also have longer stopping distances. Due to their weight and the momentum they carry, trucks require a longer distance to come to a complete stop compared to smaller vehicles.

This means that in emergency situations, such as sudden traffic stops or obstacles on the road, trucks may be unable to stop in time and end up causing rear-end collisions or other types of accidents.

Another contributing factor to the danger of trucks on the road is their limited maneuverability. Because of their size and weight, trucks have larger turning radii and require more space to make maneuvers.

This can make it challenging for truck drivers to navigate sharp turns, merge into traffic, or change lanes. When drivers cannot maneuver their trucks safely, it can lead to accidents, especially in congested or urban areas.

Furthermore, trucks’ unique characteristics, such as their high center of gravity, can increase the risk of rollover accidents. Trucks have a higher chance of tipping over when taking sharp turns at high speeds or when the driver loses control of the vehicle.

Rollover accidents can be particularly dangerous, as they can result in severe injuries not only to the truck occupants but also to other vehicles involved in the crash.

Who Is Liable When a Truck Accident Occurs?

Distracted drivingDetermining liability in a truck accident frequently requires a lawyer, as multiple parties may share responsibility, and various causes may have led to the accident.

You could hold the following parties liable for your truck accident:

  • Truck Driver: If the truck driver was negligent or engaging in reckless behavior, they can be held responsible for the accident. This includes actions such as speeding, distracted driving, or driving under the influence.
  • Trucking Company: The trucking company may bear liability if they fail to properly train the driver, enforce regulations, or adequately maintain their trucks. If a driver’s negligent actions were within the course and scope of their employment, the trucking company may also be held liable.
  • Third-Party Contractors: Sometimes, trucking companies hire third-party contractors for maintenance, inspections, or loading and unloading tasks. If an accident occurs due to a contractor’s negligence, they may share liability.
  • Manufacturers: If a truck’s defective design or parts contributed to the accident, you can hold the manufacturer accountable. Defective components like brakes, tires, or steering systems can result in catastrophic accidents.
  • Other Drivers: Sometimes, a truck accident is the fault of another driver on the road, not the trucker or anyone associated with them.

Determining liability requires thoroughly investigating the accident, gathering evidence, and applying the relevant laws and regulations. That’s why you should always consult an experienced local truck accident attorney.

Important Steps to Take After a Truck Accident

Being involved in a truck accident is typically a traumatic and overwhelming experience. However, to protect your rights and increase your chances of recovering compensation:

Seek Medical Attention

Seek immediate medical attention, even if you don’t think you have suffered any serious injuries. Your health and well-being should be your top priority.

Remember that some injuries, such as whiplash or even serious internal bleeding or organ damage, may not immediately manifest. A thorough medical evaluation can properly diagnose and treat your injuries.

Not only is a medical evaluation necessary for your health, but also for your legal claim. A licensed physician will link your injuries to the truck accident, providing a more solid basis for your claim and an increased chance of receiving the financial recovery you deserve.

Consult a Truck Accident Attorney

The legal issues of any personal injury case can be challenging, especially for a truck accident case. When dealing with severe injuries and mounting medical bills, it can be even worse.

By consulting with a truck accident attorney, you can gain valuable guidance and support throughout the legal process. You can count on your truck accident attorney to take various steps to protect your rights, gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies and fight for the full and fair compensation you deserve

Collect and Preserve EvidenceTruck Accident Attorney

Evidence is imperative in establishing liability and proving the extent of your damages.

Collect and preserve:

  • Medical receipts, bills, and records: These documents can establish the costs associated with your medical treatment and help calculate the compensation you should seek.
  • Journal of your pain and suffering: Documenting your physical and emotional pain, as well as what you miss due to your injuries, can provide valuable evidence for your case.
  • Pictures of your injuries or damaged vehicle: Visual evidence can help recreate the accident scene and demonstrate the severity of the impact.

Gathering evidence early on ensures that valuable information is not lost or forgotten over time.

Injured in a Recent Truck Accident? Contact a Skilled Truck Accident Attorney Today for Help

Seek legal representation if you or a loved one suffered an injury in a truck accident. A skilled personal injury lawyer can tackle the civil legal process and fight for the compensation you deserve.

You need a compassionate attorney with a proven track record of success. Reach out today to schedule a no-obligation consultation. Remember, you don’t have to face the aftermath of a truck accident alone.