Interstate I-295 is a major transportation route between Delaware and Trenton, New Jersey. As the route bypasses Philadelphia, trucks can avoid much of the traffic associated with a major metropolitan area. Nonetheless, I-295 is congested with people traveling to and from work, tourists driving through New Jersey, and commercial truckers delivering goods. These large tractor-trailers present a dangerous risk to the smaller cars that share the road with them.
When an accident happens involving a large commercial truck, it is rarely a minor affair. Often, when a truck loses control, multiple cars are caught up in the carnage. If you were injured in a collision with a tractor-trailer, contact our I-295 New Jersey truck accident lawyer. The attorneys and staff at the Reiff Law Firm have assisted people who have suffered catastrophic injuries for over 40 years. Call (215) 709-6940 to schedule a free appointment.
The Dangers of Trucks on Interstate 295 in New Jersey
Commercial trucks present an extreme hazard on the highways as compared to smaller cars. Accidents involving these massive vehicles often result in severe injuries or death. There are numerous reasons why tractor-trailers and similar vehicles pose an increased risk to other New Jersey motorists.
Weighing up to 80,000 pounds, tractor-trailers are the heaviest vehicles on the road. At nearly 16 times more massive than the average car, a collision with a commercial truck can be devastating. When you also factor in that these giants require approximately 350 feet to come to a stop when traveling 60 miles per hour, the odds that even the most experienced truck driver can react to sudden changes in traffic patterns is low. When a truck driver is driving aggressively or at high speed, their ability to brake in time to avoid an accident decreases exponentially.
Similar to the inability to brake suddenly, trucks are not as maneuverable as smaller vehicles. A tractor-trailer driver requires more space and time to avoid hazards on the road, such as debris, cars that change lanes suddenly, or accidents. A truck driver also has large blind spots around each side of their vehicle. It is not uncommon for a smaller car to become lost to view if a truck driver is not paying attention to the traffic on the road.
Often, the danger is with the cargo the truck is hauling. If the material is hazardous, flammable, or explosive, a seemingly minor accident could turn into a catastrophic event. If the cargo is not dangerous, it could still be loaded in such a way or unsecured, making the truck more difficult to control. A tractor-trailer that is overloaded will be even more challenging to maneuver or stop.
Truck Driver Negligence on New Jersey Interstate 295
Most commercial truck crashes are caused by driver negligence or error. Sometimes an accident occurs, and it is truly an accident. The circumstances lined up and put a truck driver in an impossible situation. However, in many cases, an accident is caused by the truck driver’s conduct. Aggressive driving, including tailgating, excessive speeding, and improper lane changes, can all result in tragic accidents.
Commercial trucks are massive vehicles that are difficult to maneuver or stop. Additionally, because of its size and design, a truck creates many blind spots for the driver. In situations where a driver is careless, distracted, or otherwise not paying full attention to the road, it is not unforeseeable for a truck driver to collide with an unsuspecting motorist. The same issues that plague many motorists also affect truck drivers. Texting, eating, or reviewing a GPS device could take a truck driver’s eyes from the roadway, or hands off the wheel, resulting in a catastrophic accident.
Unfortunately, a truck driver will sometimes feel pressure to complete a delivery quickly. This could lead to exhaustion or fatigue if the driver operates their commercial vehicle for extended periods of time without rest or sleep. They might even give in to the temptation to use drugs to stay awake.
This desire to complete a delivery quickly also often results in a truck driver operating their commercial vehicle at unsafe speeds. When a large commercial vehicle is traveling at an excessive speed, the driver’s ability to stop or avoid hazards on the highway is significantly reduced. Furthermore, when a truck impacts a much smaller vehicle at a high speed, the resulting crash and injuries are devastating or deadly.
Trucking Companies and Liability for Accidents on I-295
Trucking companies also contribute to the accidents along New Jersey highways. Commercial vehicles are complicated machines that require regular maintenance and repairs. When a trucking company fails to properly care for its fleet of trucks, the danger of putting an unsafe vehicle on the road increases. For instance, failing to inspect or replace worn tires puts the truck driver and those on the roads around them at risk.
Driving a truck safely takes experience and training. An inexperienced driver is more likely to cause an accident than a veteran driver. Trucking companies have a responsibility to ensure their drivers are experienced and adequately trained. When a company allows an untrained driver to operate one of its commercial vehicles, it could be held responsible for any injuries if the driver causes an accident.
New Jersey Truck Accidents on I-295 Caused by a Vehicle Malfunction or Mechanical Defect
Design flaws or manufacturing defects are also a factor in truck accidents. When a vital part of a truck is defective or flawed from the time it was made, the manufacturer could be held accountable if the defect caused an accident. When preparing a truck accident lawsuit, our experienced New Jersey attorney will thoroughly investigate all potential parties that could have contributed to your injury.
Call Our I-295 New Jersey Truck Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
Tractor-trailers and other large commercial trucks are a mainstay on New Jersey highways. When these mammoth beasts collide with smaller vehicles or motorcycles, the impact often results in devastating injuries. If you are hurt in an accident involving a commercial vehicle, contact our I-295 New Jersey truck accident attorney to discuss your legal options and rights. The Reiff Law Firm has been diligently representing the severely injured for over four decades. To schedule a free consultation, call the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 709-6940.