Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Truck accidents are some of the most devastating accident types, and when an accident involving a truck and a smaller vehicle, bicycle, or pedestrian occur, the results are often catastrophic, if not fatal.
Comprehending the root causes of trucking accident can help prevent accidents from occurring, and help you gain an understanding of who may have been at fault for a collision, and who should be held liable as such. The following considers some of the most common causes of truck accidents – if you’ve been hit by a truck, please call the Law Office of J. Allan Brown, LLC to schedule a free consultation today.
- Driver Errors
Perhaps the most common cause of all motor vehicle accidents, truck accidents included, is that of drivers making errors. Driver errors include several different negligent actions, and can involve the truck driver, the driver of the passenger vehicle, or both. Examples of driver errors that lead to crashes include:
- Speeding or traveling too fast for conditions;
- Driving while distracted;
- Texting while driving;
- Driving while intoxicated;
- Driving while impaired;
- Fatigued driving;
- Driving aggressively; and
- Failing to follow traffic laws and basic safety rules.
Driver errors are completely preventable, and accidents caused by driver errors can be eliminated.
- Cargo Shifts and Loading Errors
The drivers of big rigs or passenger cars aren’t always to blame for truck accidents; sometimes, these collisions occur because of a loading error that leads to a shift in cargo or other cargo problem. When cargo is not properly loaded or secured, it can move while in transit. Weight distribution in tractor-trailers is very important, and if weight is shifted too significantly because of cargo moving, a trailer could tip over, be more difficult to control, or swing erratically from side to side. In some cases, the cargo that is stored is dangerous, and moving around could mean other serious problems, such as combustion.
- Vehicle Malfunctions
Some truck accidents are nearly impossible to prevent because they are so unpredictable, such as a truck accident that is caused by a part defect. Indeed, something such as a tire blowout or brake failure can take everyone by surprise, and can cause a devastating accident that no one is expecting. Vehicle part failures may occur because the vehicle was improperly serviced or maintained, because an improper repair took place, or because the part itself was defectively designed or manufactured.
- Road Hazards
Sometimes, the cause of an accident involving a large truck is very removed from the truck driver or the driver of the passenger vehicle involved, and is caused instead by a hazard in the road. Examples of road hazards include:
- Construction zones, particularly those with improper signage;
- Potholes and other road defects;
- Animals in the road;
- Debris, such as downed trees;
- Lack of signage;
- Lack of guardrails on sharp turns; and
- Wet and slippery road conditions (while ice is rare on Mobile roads, it has happened).
When a road hazard is the cause or contributing factor of a truck accident, the party responsible for road maintenance, usually a municipal government, may share liability for damages that result from the crash.
- Trucking Company Negligence
The negligence of a trucking company is a common factor in a trucking accident. Indeed, sometimes a truck accident will occur because the trucking company failed to:
- Perform a proper background check on a driver prior to hire;
- Properly train a driver and ensure that they knew how to operate a big rig;
- Adhere to federal hours of service requirements, pushing a driver to drive more than is permitted under the law;
- Inspect vehicles and perform maintenance on a regular basis; or
- Adhere to proper loading and weight requirements for cargo – a company may overload a truck in an effort to reduce the number of trips required to transport goods, thereby saving the trucking company money.
Our Experienced Mobile Truck Accident Attorneys Are Here to Help
Regardless of the cause of a truck accident, if you have been involved in a crash, you surely want answers. At the Law Office of J. Allan Brown, LLC, our talented attorneys will work with experts to open an investigation into your case to get to the bottom of what happened and who’s to blame. From there, we will file a claim and seek damages on your behalf, and negotiate to maximize your settlement.
To learn more about our legal services or schedule a free consultation, please send us a message using the contact form on our website, visit our Mobile office in person at your convenience, or call us directly at 251-473-6691.