Causes

Truck accidents occur due to an innumerable combination of human and mechanical errors. Perhaps the truck driver is distracted, making a phone call or looking at a GPS. Maybe the accident is a result of faulty breaks or poor weather conditions. The driver may be fatigued or driving too fast in order to meet a delivery deadline. Quite often, the accident is not completely the fault of the truck driver. In fact, truck accidents typically involve multiple responsible parties, including the driver, trucking company and truck manufacturer.  Also, some other causes of commercial trucks may include: aggressive drivers, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, failure to Properly inspect the vehicle, failure to properly install blind spot mirrors, ignoring reduced truck speed limit,  unsecured cargo, tire blowouts, and jackknifing.

The variables involved in these collisions often make truck accident cases very complex.  It is vital that a truck accident claim be handled by a capable lawyer who has experience in truck accident cases. The lawyer must be qualified to investigate the accident, identify the causes and parties at fault. This is the only way to ensure that victims receive the complete and fair compensation they deserve.

Attorney Jim McEldrew is an experienced truck accident lawyer. At McEldrew Law, we provide comprehensive counsel to those who have suffered injury in accidents involving speeding, driver error, aggressive driving, negligent maintenance and issues of corporate responsibility in commercial vehicle accidents of all types.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, we urge you to call us today for a free consultation at 1-215-545-8800. In addition, feel free to review the information we have provided on our site. You may find a great deal of helpful information regarding the various causes of truck accidents.

Types of Accidents

There are many different types of truck accidents that can occur on our nation’s roadways. Some prove to be more deadly than others, but almost all truck accidents lead to devastating personal injury or damage.  An accident is always tragic, but even more so when the collision could have been avoided. Below are a few of the most common types of truck accidents.

BLIND SPOTS
It is well known that trucks have large blind spots, also referred to as “no zone” areas.  Typically, the larger the truck, the larger the blind spot. A truck driver has a blind spot in the rear of the truck, as well as in the front of the truck.  Be aware of truck blind spots, and avoid these areas if possible.  The rule is if you cannot see the truck driver in his/her mirror, the truck driver probably cannot see you.

HEAD-ON COLLISION
When a tractor trailer and smaller vehicle collide “head-on” or nose to nose, the result can be particularly devastating. Both vehicles have a tremendous amount of force behind them, especially the truck, due to its sheer size, speed and weight. These accidents normally occur when one vehicle veers into the opposite lane of a road or highway.

JACKKNIFING
This type of collision occurs when a trailer of a truck folds toward the cab of the vehicle, resembling the acute angle of a folding pocket knife. If a vehicle towing a trailer skids, the trailer can push it from behind until it spins round and faces backwards. The sliding trailer may collide with smaller cars in its wake, crushing them into the cab or pushing them off the road. This may be caused by Equipment failurE, improper braking, or adverse road conditions such as an icy road surface.  In rare cases, a driver may attempt to deliberately jackknife the vehicle in order to halt it following brake failure.

SIDE COLLISION
There are many circumstances that may lead a truck to crash into the side of another vehicle including break malfunction, excessive speed, insufficient safety distance between vehicles, and poor weather conditions or other circumstances.  In these cases, it is almost guaranteed that the driver and any passengers will suffer severe injuries.

PILEUP
These accidents involve multiple vehicles, and often lead to substantial injuries for the drivers in the smaller vehicles. Rear-ends, over-rides and under-rides are common in these types of collisions. If the truck driver has enough speed and velocity to involve several cars in the accident, there are likely severe injuries that may even be fatal.

REAR END, UNDER-RIDE & OVER-RIDE ACCIDENTS
A rear end collision occurs when a truck drives into the back of a passenger vehicle, or vice versa. An over-ride collision occurs when a truck drives over the smaller vehicle.

Over-ride accidents are typically due to driver fatigue, brake failure, tire blowout, reckless driving, weather, and tailgating.  An under-ride collision is when the smaller vehicle crashes into and continues beneath the larger truck. This type of accident can cause head trauma or decapitation. Around 40 percent of all fatal under-ride collisions are due to the vehicle going beneath the rear corner of the trailer. The most infamous under-ride occurred in 1967 when actress Jayne Mansfield was killed after her vehicle collided with a stopped truck, virtually removing the roof of her vehicle.

Nearly 30 years later, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s insisted that all new tractor trailers contain a guard to prevent these accidents. This follows a 1993 rule that all new tractor trailers be equipped with reflective tape along the sides and rear of the trailer. There was no requirement made to retrofit older trucks without guards or reflective tape.

To avoid rear-end, override and under-ride accidents, all trucks should have at least:

– Lights, warning signs, or flashing lights when parked on the side of the road
– Tail lights and reflective tape
– Brakes inspected regularly
– Keep their distance from other vehicles around them

If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident, call McEldrew Law today. We will thoroughly investigate the accident, determine who is at fault and get you the compensation you deserve. Call us now for a free consultation at 1-800-590-4116.

Call 1-800-590-4116 to Speak to a McEldrew Young AttorneyEmail Us