While auto vehicles bring with them an inherent risk due to their size and weight, trucks and tractor-trailers carry an even greater risk. In 2017, 72 percent of people killed in large-truck crashes were occupants of other vehicles. This was up 9 percent from 2016.
The average passenger vehicle weighs about 2.5 tons, while the average commercial truck weighs about 40 tons. It is because of this disproportion that most fatalities that occur in accidents between a passenger vehicle and a tractor-trailer are occupants of the passenger vehicles.
Though very tragic, drivers of all vehicles can work to minimize their risk of being involved in a big rig accident by first learning what is most likely to cause one. Here are some of the most common causes of tractor-trailer accidents.
1. Manufacturing Errors
Sometimes accidents happen that are truly out of our control no matter how many safeguards we put in place or how much caution we take. One such reason is manufacturing errors. Sometimes there are mistakes that occur during the manufacturing process such as faulty brakes.
2. Distracted Driving
Since truck drivers spend most of their time on the road, they get very comfortable behind the wheel. Because of the amount of time that truck drivers spend behind the wheel, they often engage in other activities, such as eating, texting, talking on the phone, or changing the radio, while driving.
3. Drowsy Driving
It is difficult to focus on anything when you are sleep deprived. That’s why most states have regulations in place that limit the number of hours that a driver can be on the road without stopping and sleeping. Drivers who violate these regulations often lose focus and cause accidents.
4. Maintenance Neglect
It is the responsibility of big rig companies to keep up to date on the maintenance of their vehicles. When they fail to do so and are involved in an accident they can be held liable for the damages.
5. Weather Conditions
Inclement weather is often the cause of many vehicle crashes – regardless of the vehicle. But since tractor-trailers are harder to control than smaller vehicles, they may be more easily impacted by dangerous weather such as snow, rain, or fog. When the driver engages in aggressive driving behavior, is speeding, or isn’t very familiar with the road it only compounds the situation.
What Can You Do?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident due to the negligence of another, the experienced and compassionate Personal Injury Attorneys at Caddell Reynolds can help you and your family to move forward.
We examine the facts of your case individually and will walk you through each step of the legal process. Call Caddell Reynolds today at 479-242-1000 for a FREE Legal Consultation. There’s no fee unless you win!