When you are driving you are being bombarded with tons of information and whether you realize it or not you are making hundreds of decisions every minute. Therefore, when there is an accident involving any vehicle it can be for a variety of reasons. In some cases, a single factor can cause an accident. However, in most cases, more than one factor combines to the point where an accident become unavoidable. Common reasons for serious accidents involving semis, 18-wheelers, and other commercial trucks includes:
- Changing traffic conditions- Tractor-trailers are not as maneuverable as other vehicles and therefore whenever there are changing or irregular traffic patterns it can be difficult for a commercial driver to quickly adjust.
- Mechanical problems with the commercial motor vehicle (CMV) – mechanical issues with trucks are presupposed to be avoided thru regular inspections and renovation. but, a few trucking agencies are less meticulous with ensuring that their automobiles are in sound situation. Problems with a truck considerably boom the probabilities of a lack of vehicle manage.
- Poor weather conditions – Weather can change in an instant and be unpredictable. When weather changes or there are poor weather conditions, the likelihood that there is going to be an accident increase.
- Fatigued CMV driver – Truck drivers are notoriously overworked and under-rested. While there have been several laws passed that have been aimed at addressing tired drivers, some drivers do not follow these laws and regulations and drive well beyond the timeframe deemed safe.
- Drunk or drugged truck driver – A commercial driver who drinks alcohol before getting behind the wheel or who takes illegal drugs or certain prescription drugs before driving greatly increase the odds of an accident. Intoxicating substances can impair decision-making and cause other effects making an accident more likely.
Types of Commercial Vehicles
There are several types of commercial vehicles that may be involved in an accident on any of the Baltimore County roads. As you will see, can range in size from small trucks that do not weigh much more than a standard car to massive vehicles that can pose a threat to any car that gets in their way.
- Light trucks – these type of vehicles are commonly pickup trucks or light vans. It is rare for these type of vehicles to have a gross vehicle weight or GVW of over 10,000.
- Medium trucks – usually these trucks will weigh anywhere from 10,0001 lbs. to 20,000 lbs. GVW.
- Heavy Trucks— Many trucks other than light trucks will fall into this category. The manufacturer usually refers to these trucks as “21⁄2 tons to “41⁄2 tons” and in some cases up to “5 tons. 20,001 lbs. to 45,000 lbs. GVW
- Extra Heavy Trucks – Many trucks falling into this category will be the very large dump trucks and the larger mix-in-transit trucks. Vehicles in this weight range will have a nominal rating of 41⁄2 tons and above.
- Extra Heavy Truck Tractors – The majority of tractors fall into this category. It does not matter if the tractor is single rear axle or dual rear axle. If the GCW is over 45,000 lbs., it is classified under this category.
Who is Responsible for Baltimore County Truck Accidents?
Determining who is responsible for an accident is never an easy task because more often than not accidents are the result of several factors and multiple events that all came together to cause the accident. Therefore most accidents and those involving tractor-trailers commonly are rooted in a theory of negligence. Under Maryland law, a person has a right to recover for negligence by proving four elements: duty, breach, causation, and injury. First, there must be a duty or obligation to do something or to not do something according to the reasonable person standard.
For example, a driver may have a duty not to speed on icy roads or a store manager may have a duty to warn customers that the floors have just been mopped. Second, this duty must be breached: a person has done something that the person should not have done or failed to do something that the person should. To continue the first example, the driver breached the driver’s duty by driving 100 miles per hour on the icy road. Or, in the other example, the store manager might fail to place a “warning” sign by a wet and slippery floor. Third, there must be a reasonably close causal connection between the breach of the duty and a resulting injury. If the driver had not been speeding, the car accident would not have occurred. If there had been a “warning” sign, the customer would not have slipped and fallen.
Finally, there must be damage resulting to the interests of another. Damages can include medical bills, property damage, pain and suffering, loss of companionship, loss of reputation, lost wages for time spent away from work, and other types of losses.
Contact our Baltimore County Truck Accident Lawyers Today
To schedule a private, no-cost evaluation, call the law offices of Reiff Law Firm Trucking at (215) 709-6940 or contact us online. If the statute of limitations expires, your window of legal opportunity will close and you won’t be able to pursue a claim.