Winter in Kentucky can be beautiful. The peaceful feeling of freshly fallen snow and the excitement of winter sports and activities can be fun. However, winter weather also comes with significant risks—particularly on our roads.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Winter Weather
Conditions such as ice and snow may make driving more difficult. However, it is the conduct of truckers may make accidents more likely. For example, a trucker may be responsible for an accident that occurs in the ice or snow if a trucker:
- Is unprepared: Truckers must check tires, engine parts, electrical components and exhaust systems to make sure their vehicles are ready for winter. Failure to do so can lead to mechanical failure or a sudden burst tire during travel.
- Uses “summer” behavior: Drivers should put extra distance between their rigs and other vehicles, slow down during harsh conditions, and brake much earlier when the weather is hazardous.
- Is distracted: Truckers have long hours behind the wheel and some may be distracted by texting, talking on the phone, or even watching videos on electronic devices while driving.
- Is unwilling to stop when the weather is bad: Due to tight deadlines, some truckers push on when visibility gets bad—even when they can no longer see at all.
- Loads cargo improperly: A poorly balanced load can lead to instability and cause a truck to fishtail or roll over on wet or icy pavement.
Winter weather conditions can result in car drivers having accidents with:
- Private trucks: Deliveries must still be made in the winter, and private trucks may be involved in bad weather crashes.
- Snow plows: Snow removal operators are expected to cover a wide area of rural and city streets, often while the snow is still coming down. In addition to time pressure, low visibility, and fatigue, many snowplows are built by converting smaller trucks or off-road vehicles, many of which are not meant to handle the load.
- Utility trucks: When the power goes out, these trucks need to be on the road in order to get the grid up and running again. However, they’re likely to be driving down blacked-out streets and into narrow neighborhood lanes—the weight of their vehicle making it difficult to stop suddenly.
- Salt trucks: Salt truck drivers often have to get up early and drive through the dark before morning traffic begins. The combination of early hours and pre-dawn lighting can cause some serious injuries.
Whether you’ve been hurt by a municipal vehicle, a state truck, or a privately owned tractor trailer, it is important to take prompt steps to protect your recovery.
How to Recover From a Truck Accident in Kentucky This Winter
If you’ve been hurt or if you’ve lost a loved one in a truck crash, then you have a limited amount of time to take action. The trucking company and its insurer will be working hard to minimize your recovery. You can help maximize your recovery by contacting an experienced Louisville truck accident lawyer who will conduct a full investigation into the cause of your crash and who will advocate for your full and fair recovery. To learn more, please start a live chat with us now.