Top 7 Causes of Preventable Semi-Truck Accidents
Accidents on the road are terrible events that often lead to serious injuries, and in the worst cases, death. As dangerous as accidents involving four wheeled vehicles are, they’re not quite as dangerous as collisions involving semi-trucks. As the saying goes, the bigger they are, the harder they fall, and it’s no different for truck accidents.
The semi-truck industry has many rules and regulations in addition to the rules of the road that must be followed. Additionally, many commercial trucking companies will investigate a collision to determine whether the collision was preventable. Like the insiders of the trucking industry, the seasoned attorneys at Power Rogers & Smith know these rules and regulations and can investigate whether the truck driver failed to follow the rules and whether he or she could have done something to prevent the accident. Below are the most common preventable causes of trucking collisions:
- Driver Fatigue: Truck drivers work long hours, and failure to take care of themselves can end in a catastrophe. The regulations are intended to keep truck drivers and those around them safe, but not all drivers adhere to the rules. When drivers pull extra-long shifts or skip necessary rest breaks, the risk of a mistake greatly increases.
- Improper Loading of Cargo: Even if the shipper is responsible for the actual loading, it’s up to the driver to ensure that his truck is safe for the road. Whether it’s not properly secured or balanced, items can shift during transit and cause the truck to lose control and roll over, especially during a turn.
- Speeding: Even though trucks are generally considered the slowest vehicles on the highway, they still aren’t required to have speed limiters installed, leaving the control in the hands of the drivers. Whether the truck rolls when taking a corner too fast or is unable to brake in time, excessive speeding is a very preventable cause of collisions.
- Reckless Driving: Along with speeding, the way a big rig driver handles the road has a big effect on the preventability of collisions. Some professional truck drivers constantly switch lanes in an attempt to cut a few minutes off their delivery time, but with such a large vehicle that is a dangerous choice to make. Failing to check a blind spot one time is all it can take to cause a collision.
- Substance Abuse: Driving under the influence is unacceptable no matter what type of vehicle you operate, but getting behind the wheel of a 36-ton truck while inebriated increases the likelihood of a large-scale preventable collision.
- Improper Truck Maintenance: Without proper maintenance, machinery will break down. When a driver fails to ensure his truck is properly maintained and a piece breaks down or breaks free harming someone, that is usually a preventable condition.
- Underinflated Tires: Underinflated tires hurt fuel economy, increases the wear and tear, and over time can destroy tire casings. Ensuring that tires are properly taken care of is a simple way to prevent a disaster, but failing to do so can risk the lives of anyone on the road.
If you were in an accident caused by a commercial truck driver, contact Power Rogers & Smith today. In the past two years alone, we’ve recovered over $260 million in truck accident cases, and our skilled and experienced lawyers are ready to add your case to that list. We work on a contingency fee basis, meaning that you won’t pay us unless we win your case. Schedule your free case review with one of our Chicago truck accident attorneys today.