A truck driver is required to have specialized training to gain a license for operating a commercial motor vehicle. If a driver causes a crash due to lack of training and experience, the company that hired the driver may be subject to a claim for negligence in hiring or specialized instruction.
Truck crashes are more complicated and more harmful than auto crashes for several reasons. Here are three:
- Trucks are large, heavy vehicles. The sheer size of a truck increases the likelihood of significant and very serious damage to human life and property in a collision between a truck and a car. When a collision with a truck causes injuries or fatalities, it is usually the occupants of the other (smaller, lighter) vehicle that are injured. (Every crash is different, and a truck driver or passenger may also suffer life-threatening injuries.)
- Truck crash injuries tend to be much more severe. “A loaded semi can weigh 80,000 pounds or more. Most cars weigh approximately 3,000 pounds. … Because of the greater likelihood of significant injury, truckers are required to carry insurance with higher liability limits.” This means that more money is often available for settling personal injury lawsuits when truck crashes are involved.
- Additionally, trucks are at greater risk for specific types of crashes, according to accident-law.freeadvice.com:
- Jackknifing: When a truck jackknifes as a result of disabled front brakes, the driver doesn’t have enough time to react before it’s too late.
- Rollovers: Rollovers are more likely to cause serious injuries and fatalities. They can happen when the driver makes a mistake, such as taking a curve too fast; when the truck is unevenly loaded or malfunctions; or when highway conditions are dangerous.
- Brakes: Brake malfunctions are a frequent cause of truck crashes, because large trucks have air brakes that are vulnerable to heat. “A full stop at 60 mph raises the brake drum temperature to about 600 degrees,” the limit for safe operation. Brakes are more likely to malfunction when they are not properly maintained.
- Fires: A track catches fire when a battery spark ignites its diesel fuel. If the battery is in a location where it may be crushed in an accident, the person who located it there may bear some responsibility for such a fire.
Richard Manger, principal of Manger Law Firm, has extensive experience in litigation and settlements, with a focus on personal injury and workers’ compensation law. We are proud of the strong relationships of loyalty and trust we develop with our clients. We go above and beyond to achieve the best possible outcome in your case. You can contact Richard Manger via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling (336) 882-2000.