A Howard County, Maryland resident was critically injured last week when his passenger vehicle collided with a tractor trailer on Interstate-70. Unfortunately, tractor trailer accidents are not uncommon on our roadways. For instance, did you know according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) there has been a 20% increase in trucking accidents over the last two decades?
Around 500,000 trucking accidents occur every year in the US, with 5,000 resulting in fatalities and leaving thousands more seriously injured. The attorneys at The Yost Legal Group continue to represent victims and their family members who have been injured by tractor trailer accidents. The Yost Legal Group stresses the importance of safe driving, particularly when sharing the roads with big rigs. It is important to be aware of the five most common causes of truck accidents.
1) Truck Driver Error: According to the FMCSA, driver error is ten times more likely to be the cause of a crash than any other factor. Driver fatigue, distractions and substance abuse are the most common causes of driver error.
2) Weather Conditions: Weighing upwards of 80,000 pounds, a loaded semi can outweigh the average passenger vehicle by more than 25 times. This means, due to their heavy load, trucks need to increase their braking distance in bad weather. Staying apprised of local weather patterns can assist the driver’s anticipation of breaking when needed.
3) Truck Equipment Failure: Defective tires and faulty reverse lights are examples of truck equipment failures. The FMSCA requires pre-trip inspections, as well as companies to perform routine inspections and maintenance throughout the year. Ignoring these guidelines leads to accidents.
4) Improper Loading: A truck can malfunction when moving if the load is not safely configured or distributed on the trailer. Improper loading can also lead to not being safely secured, resulting in the load falling off onto roadways.
5) Truck Driver or Company Selection: Shippers need to be diligent in background checks on drivers and companies to ensure the best delivery results. They should check each are compliant with FMSCA regulations.
When driving a passenger vehicle, there are several steps you can take to help ensure safe travels when on the road with tractor trailers.
– Don’t tailgate or drive along side of trucks for too long.
– Stay visible by being aware tractor trailers have much larger blind spots.
– Leave more room for trucks to stop on wet roads.
– Use caution when merging into traffic in front of trucks.
– Pay attention to turn signals.
If you or a loved one is ever injured in a tractor trailer accident, a car accident or any other type of accident call The Yost Legal Group for help. We’ll speak with you for free to discuss your situation and help you to understand your rights. If we take your case we will do so on a no win/no fee or expense basis only. That means you do not pay a fee or expense unless you recover.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, call 1-800-YOST-LAW (1-800-967-8529) to speak to one of our attorneys today.
The Yost Legal Group, Experienced Lawyers Dedicated to Protecting your Rights.