Truck accidents are serious. The sheer size and weight of large commercial trucks magnify the intensity of any crash they are involved in. Unfortunately, truck drivers are some of the most notoriously reckless drivers on the highways and roadways in Kentucky and throughout the United States. Our firm's Kentucky truck accident attorneys have successfully handled almost every type of truck wreck case. Some types of accidents, however, appear more common than others.
Common Types of Truck Accidents: How They Happen and Who's at Fault
Center Lane Crossover
Because crossover accidents happen so quickly, they leave little time for drivers to react. In the case of crossover accidents involving trucks, the damages are typically very severe because of their large size. In the event an accident occurs because the truck driver is driving recklessly and crosses into the lane of another vehicle, the truck driver is liable. In some cases, a center lane crossover accident ensues when a truck driver loses control due to vehicle malfunction, in which case the driver could be responsible for poor maintenance or the manufacturer for poor design.
A truck tire blowout occurs when an exhausted or defective tire is exposed to abrupt pressure or impact, causing the tire to explode or lose air pressure fast. Tire blowouts often lead to loss of control and can result in serious injuries or death. Tire blowouts can be attributed to many factors, including failure to maintain tire condition, faulty manufacturer design or assembly, and/or overinflated or under-inflated tires. The cause of the tire blowout can be a combination of several factors. Furthermore, more than one party can be responsible for causing the tire blowout. Determining the party or parties responsible for the accident is dependent on the cause of the blowout. Liable parties could include manufacturers, drivers, maintenance companies, and/or distributors.
Speed limit laws exist for a reason. Driving over the speed limit exponentially increases the chance of an accident. The chances of an accident and the potential consequences of an accident become significantly more dangerous when a truck is driving over the speed limit. Due to the considerable size and weight of a commercial truck, the reaction time it takes to stop a truck is much longer than the average car.
The braking system is responsible for slowing and stopping a truck. If a truck's braking system malfunctions, the result can lead to devastating damages. Brake failure can ensue from multiple causes. In some cases, the driver can be at fault for neglecting to regularly maintain the braking system. The manufacturer of the braking system can also be liable for neglecting to maintain the tires during repair. If the braking system contains a design flaw, the manufacturer would be liable as well.
Too Heavy of a Load
Trucks are made to carry heavy loads, but the capacity they are able to carry is still limited. Overloading a truck—when the truck carries an amount that exceeds its capacity—can be very unsafe. Excessive loading in a flatbed truck can cause the cargo to fall off and create hazardous obstacles for other cars on the road. Overloading can also affect the center of gravity of the truck and contribute to it tipping over. In certain cases of overloading, the driver can be at fault. The trucking company can also be at fault.
Driver fatigue is one of the leading causes of trucking accidents. Driver fatigue results from driver exhaustion and can render the driver unable to safely operate his or her vehicle. Exhaustion slows the reaction time of the driver and can lead to loss of control. Lack of proper resting time between shifts or too long of shifts can result in driver fatigue. Both the driver and truck company could be liable if an accident is caused by driver fatigue.
A truck override occurs when the front end, or in some cases, the entirety of a truck rides over an automobile during an accident. An override is essentially a rear end collision, but due to the size and massive force of trucks, truck overrides most often result in serious damages or death. Overrides typically occur when the driver of a truck is not paying attention, does not react in time to the surrounding conditions, is reckless driving, and/ or the truck has been improperly maintained.
The blind spot of a truck is often referred to as the “no-zone.” Automobile drivers are cautioned not to drive in the “no-zone” because although all vehicles have blind spots, the blind spots on a truck are much larger and much more dangerous. Although drivers should do their best no to stay in the “no-zone” of a truck, the truck driver has a responsibility to check before making a turn, changing lanes, or stopping. If the truck driver fails to do so, then he or she is at fault in the accident.
Throughout Kentucky and Nationwide, Our Truck Accident Attorneys Will Fight For Your Rights
Correctly determining exactly who is responsible for the truck accident that caused your injuries is not always an easy matter. You need an experienced truck accident lawyer to begin collecting evidence for your claim as soon as possible before it disappears or is swept under the rug by the insurance companies trying to deny your claim.
Our firm has successfully handled truck wreck claims resulting in millions of dollars recovered for our clients. If you've been seriously injured in an accident with a commercial truck, their insurance company will try to deny your claim, and you do need aggressive, experienced legal representation. Contact our truck wreck lawyers today for a free, no-obligation consultation.