Interstate 276 is part of the Pennsylvania Turnpike and is designated as interstate 276 between Valley Forge and the New Jersey border. As part of the Pennsylvania Turnpike system, this road provides drivers with access to some of the major cities in Pennsylvania, namely Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and Pittsburgh. Not only is this road extensively traveled by motorists including truck drivers, but this road cuts across mountain ranges and has curves and hills which can make driving on this road difficult. Not only do drivers need to be concerned with the road itself, but the weather on the Turnpike can be a negative factor.
Specifically, Interstate 276 begins after the Valley Forge Interchange where it becomes a six-lane road that serves the surrounding suburban commuter communities. Crossing the Schuylkill River near Norristown, and running for nearly 33 miles, this road provides local motorists access to the rest of the state. Interstate 276 provides access to the following townships and communities:
- Plymouth Meeting
- Lehigh Valley
- Pocono Mountains
- Fort Washington
- Willow Grove
- Neshaminy Falls
- Delaware River-Turnpike Toll Bridge
Because of the size and location of this road, it is evident that many drivers use this road on a daily basis, which can make travel difficult and dangerous. A recent accident demonstrates that not only is there a risk of being involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer, but they also pose unique threats to drivers on the road. This past May crews spent hours cleaning parts of Interstate 276 in Levittown after a tractor-trailer carrying printers’ ink caught fire. While there were no reported injuries, in this case, this accident demonstrates the hazards that trucks can pose to other motorists.
Major Causes of Truck Accidents
Fatal tractor-trailer accidents cost Americans more than $20 billion each year, $13.1 billion of which is the cost associated with loss of quality of life. However, even if an accident does not result in a loss of a life, truck accidents are still devastating and traumatic events. Some of the leading causes of these accidents on our roads include:
- Hazardous materials – If the above accident demonstrates anything, it is that not only are trucks and other commercial vehicles dangerous because of their size, weight, and because of dangerous drivers, but also because of the materials they may be transporting.
- Drug or alcohol abuse – Drug and alcohol use is never advised when operating a motor vehicle of any size. However, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in over a quarter of all truck accidents, trace amounts of either alcohol or illicit drugs were found.
- Improperly loaded cargo – Along with hazardous materials in the back of a trailer, the way that it is loaded is critical to safely driving down roads such as Interstate 276. If the cargo is not loaded properly it can shift in the back of the trailer causing the driver to lose control of their vehicle leading to an accident.
- Road rage – Road rage is not just reserved for passenger vehicle drivers who are impatient to get to their destinations, but rather road rage behind the wheel of a tractor-trailer is a leading cause of accidents. Road rage causes drivers to engage in risky driving behaviors such as rapidly changing lanes.
What Payments can I Receive from an Accident Claim?
According to a study conducted by the United States Department of Transportation, there are nearly half a million accidents involving a truck that weighs 10,000 pounds or more every year. Because of the vast differences in size and weight, a staggering 98 percent of all injuries and fatalities from a truck crash are sustained by the passenger vehicle.
You may be compensated for the following:
- Medical expenses – Following an injury or accident, medical bills may be an immediate cause for concern. Medical bills can quickly add to tens of thousands of dollars. If you are injured as a result of another’s negligence, then you may be entitled to full compensation for your medical expenses.
- Lost wages – In addition to large medical bills, injured victims often are unable to work for extended periods of time while they are healing and recovering from their injuries. In these circumstances, you may be entitled to payments to cover the differential in your wages.
- Rehabilitation expenses – Many accidents involving trucks and other large vehicles lead to debilitating injuries which require rehabilitation. Rehabilitation does not just include medical rehabilitation, but also covers vocational rehabilitation so if you are unable to work as a result of your injuries, you may be compensated for job retraining.
- Pain and suffering – Not only do personal injury claims seek to recover for the physical injuries, but they also are based on the pain and suffering a person must endure as a result of an accident.
You are also entitled to receive compensation for all out of pocket expenses related to your accident such as costs associated with traveling to and from appointments, covering additional childcare. However, if you have been injured in an accident involving a truck or other commercial vehicle it is not wise to wait. In Pennsylvania, you have two years to file a case for a personal injury such as one resulting from a truck accident.
Suffering from a Tractor-trailer accident on Interstate 276 and Need a Pennsylvania Truck Accident Lawyer?
If you have been involved in a serious commercial truck accident with an 18-wheeler or other commercial truck, you may be entitled to damages. Commercial trucks large size and significant weight often mean that the injuries inflicted are significantly worse than those typically suffered in other accidents. The truck accident injury lawyers of Reiff Law Firm’s The Truck Accident Team may be able to fight for you. To schedule a free and confidential consultation call (215) 246-9000 or contact us online today.