More than 30 million different kinds of trucks operate on American roads. They play an integral role in the economy, hauling billions of tons of freight across the country. However, despite these behemoths’ crucial role, they put everyone on the road in danger. Thousands of people are injured and lose their lives in truck accidents every year.
If you were a truck accident victim, consider consulting a lawyer to learn more about such accidents, the contributing factors, and why seeking legal help is vital.
Truckers Have a Higher Accident Rate Per Driver Than Others on the Road
According to a publication posted at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), around 159,000 people were injured, and 5,005 lost their lives in accidents involving large trucks in 2019. That year, statistics revealed that of the 2 million active commercial truck drivers in the country, about 450,000 of them were involved in a serious accident. This adds up to a 1 in 5 likelihood of a truck driver being involved in an accident every year.
Tractor-trailers and large trucks, in general, make up a small percentage of the vehicles on the road, but they are involved in nearly 500,000 accidents every year. Despite making up just 0.008% of licensed drivers in the U.S., truckers are involved in 8% of all vehicle accidents in the country.
A commercial truck driver is much more likely to be involved in an accident than an average driver. So, why do truck drivers have a higher accident rate per driver than other license holders? Why are they more likely to get into crashes than the average driver?
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What Factors Contribute to Truck Accidents?
Truck accidents tend to be among the most devastating crashes on the road, primarily due to the large vehicles’ immense weight and size. Data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety (FMCS) shows that the following factors are common in most truck accidents:
- Driver Negligence or Error: Operating a large truck requires plenty of skill and attention to detail. Truck drivers often have to make calculations and decisions that ordinary drivers do not have to consider. If they are negligent or are not paying enough attention to the road when turning and making maneuvers, they may collide with other motorists or passengers.
- Poor Truck Maintenance: Poor or negligent maintenance is partly responsible for many truck accidents. Unsecured cargo and failed brakes were the primary causative factors in these crashes.
- Driver Fatigue or Exhaustion: Truck drivers usually log long hours behind the wheel. These long work hours could lead to fatigue and exhaustion without enough rest. According to the NHTSA, more than 91,000 crashes occurred after the drivers fell asleep at the wheel in 2019.
- Speeding: Due to their weight, trucks generate a lot of inertia and take much longer than regular cars to come to a complete stop. As such, truck drivers cannot react fast to changes in direction and speed once they start speeding, making it difficult to control their vehicles and increasing the likelihood of crashes.
- Unfavorable Weather Conditions: Weather like snow, rain, and fog can impair visibility and make the roads slippery. Truck drivers will have an especially hard time controlling their trucks in these conditions.
How Can a Truck Accident Lawyer Help Me?
If you have been involved in a truck accident, you might be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party or parties. However, getting the compensation you deserve can be a daunting process. Anyone who has ever dealt with insurance providers knows just how much of a hassle it can be. On top of collecting all the pertinent evidence and filing all the relevant paperwork, you will have to negotiate with insurance representatives.
That is probably the last thing you want to do when you are stuck in a hospital bed injured, with no income, and wondering how you will pay for your everyday expenses and the mounting medical bills. However, a lawyer can build a solid truck accident case and negotiate with the insurance providers on your behalf.
Your truck accident attorney will work to get you enough compensation to cover the following types of damages:
- Present and future medical expenses
- Rehabilitation and therapy
- Disfigurement, scarring, and loss of limbs
- Physical suffering and emotional anguish
- Wrongful death if the truck accident resulted in the death of a loved one
- Lost income and loss of earning potential
- Property damage
- Legal fees
Contact Our Truck Accident Attorneys to Learn More Today
Has an accident involving a truck left you injured? Did such an accident claim the life of a loved one? If yes, you might be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party. Consider reaching out to Isaacs & Isaacs Personal Injury Lawyers to discuss your legal options.
Our lawyers have recovered over $1 billion in settlements for clients, and we are ready to get started on your case. Contact us for a free case review and more information.