What Are the Primary Causes of Trucking Accidents?
The damage that results from a trucking accident can be severe. Indeed, when a vehicle weighing approximately 80,000 pounds and a vehicle weighing approximately 4,000 pounds collide, the smaller vehicle is often completely destroyed, and anyone within the smaller vehicle is left with severe injuries.
Reducing the number of truck accidents that occur in Tennessee is a top priority, and starts with understanding the primary causes of these crashes. Here’s what you should know.
Truck drivers, and truck drivers’ errors, are one of the leading causes of trucking accidents, as reported by a Large Truck Causation Study published by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. While the study is a bit dated, it highlights common driver errors that lead to crashes, including:
- Falling asleep;
- Driving while inattentive or distracted;
- Driving too fast for conditions;
- Using prescription drugs;
- Making an illegal maneuver;
- Driving while impaired by alcohol;
- Driving aggressively;
- Misjudging the speed of other vehicles;
- Panicking; and
While the above focuses on the errors of truck drivers, the operators of passenger cars are often guilty of the above behaviors (and other negligent acts), and contribute to truck collisions as such. For example, driving within a truck driver’s blind spots, tailgating, cutting a truck off, engaging in “squeeze play,” passing a truck on the right rather than the left, etc. are all examples of dangerous driver behaviors that increase the risk of a trucking accident.
Sometimes, truck drivers or other drivers on the road aren’t to blame for truck accidents; an accident occurs as a result of a cargo shift, which throws off the truck’s balance and impairs the driver’s ability to control the vehicle. Cargo shifts are typically caused by the improper loading or securement of the cargo, although an inherent risk or defect with the cargo could be to blame (i.e. a dangerous material that combusts under force or with movement).
Other Factors that Cause Trucking Accidents
Other factors that contribute to truck accidents might include:
- Truck and truck part errors, such as defective tires, brakes, or engine; and
- Hazardous road conditions, ranging from poor weather to animals on the road to potholes to improper signage and more.
Sometimes, the trucking company is to blame for the truck accident, as they may have failed to maintain or repair trucks, properly trained their driver, or may even have pressured the truck driver to violate federal hours of service requirements, greatly increasing the risk of fatigued driving and therefore an accident.
You Deserve to Be Compensated if You Are Injured
If you have been involved in a trucking accident in Tennessee, you deserve to be compensated for the harm that you have suffered. At the offices of Bednarz Law, our aggressive truck accident attorneys will work hard to make sure that you have the legal representation that you deserve after a crash. To increase your chances of getting compensation, call us today or send us a message to schedule a free case consultation.