The trucking industry sends thousands of trucks out onto the roads every day. They are important to our country and our economy. However, no matter how many safety features or laws that are enacted, there are accidents involving these vehicles every day.
If you have been involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer contact us today. We will review your truck accident case, and explain your legal options, and how you may be able to recover for any property damage to your car, or for any injuries to your body.
What Causes Truck Accidents in Columbia County?
Crashes that involved large trucks, semis, and 18-wheelers are often among the worst type of accidents that can happen on the road. Accidents involving tractor-trailers can happen anywhere. Whether you are driving down route 93, or Route 11 you are likely sharing the road with some commercial vehicles. Over the years fo working with and representing those who have been injured in truck accidents, we have come to realize that each accident is a unique event that is the result of a set of circumstances and factors. However, using our experience we have seen those truck accidents can often be attributed to one or more of the following factors:
If you have ever been the driver on a long road trip you are probably familiar with the fatigue that can set in after spending just a few hours driving. Now, imagine if you had to drive for twelve hours straight. Many commercial drivers are expected to drive hundreds of miles in a day and must meet strict delivery deadlines. This means that drivers often ignore their own fatigue, and may even ignore federally mandated breaks in order to meet their deadlines. However, this is not only in violation of the Hours of Service requirements implanted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, but it is also downright dangerous. There is a direct correlation between the amount of time that a driver is continuously driving and more likely they will be involved in an accident.
Think about what it takes to bring your car to a stop, even if you have to stop your car for an emergency. A standard passenger vehicle uses only a single brake pedal to bring the entire vehicle to a complete stop, and the car’s braking system is somewhat simple. To contrast what it takes to bring a standard car to a stop, imagine how much more effort it would take to bring a fully-loaded commercial truck weighing 50,000 pounds to a complete stop. The braking system on a truck has to be in top order to be able to achieve this feat. However, because the braking system on a truck is vastly more complex it means accidents happen as the result of one or more braking systems not functioning properly in a commercial vehicle.
Truck driver prescription use and abuse
Taking medication is something that many people do daily and do not think about it. However, many medications carry strict warnings that they should not be taken while operating heavy machinery. In addition, many medications can cause drowsiness and sleepiness, which is already a problem that many truck drivers face on a daily basis.
Unfamiliarity with the road
If you have ever driven down Interstate 80 you know that there are some turns and stops that you need to be aware of. Truck drivers often drive very long distances and often to locations they have never been to before. Even a driver who is experienced can miss a sign or make an improper turn because they do not know their surroundings. When truckers are not familiar with the location they are in they can cause accidents.
Road construction is a common reason for trucks, semi’s, and 18-wheelers to be in an accident. Even minor road construction that leaves uneven pavement may cause a driver to lose control over their vehicle and end up on the side of the road, or rollover. In addition, because many construction sites require one or more lanes to be shut down, trucks can have a difficult time navigating in these tight spaces, which can lead to them being in an accident.
Columbia County has many roads that truck drivers and commercial delivery services use every day including Pennsylvania Route 93, Pennsylvania Route 118, Pennsylvania Route 42, U.S. Route 11, Interstate 80, and several other state and local highways. This means that there is always the risk that you will be involved in an accident when you are driving.
Have you been injured in a truck accident in Columbia County
To schedule a private, no-cost evaluation, call us at (215) 709-6940 or contact us online.