18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer
Hit by an 18-Wheeler, Commercial Vehicle or Other Big Truck?
According to the National Safety Council, in 2021, 5,700 large trucks were involved in a fatal crash, an 18% increase from 2020 and a 49% increase in the last 10 years. Large trucks account for just 5% of all registered vehicles on the road yet they accounted for 9% of all vehicles involved in fatal crashes.
If you were injured, or someone you know was killed, in an accident involving an 18-wheeler, commercial vehicle or big truck, speak to an accident lawyer to learn your legal rights. There are numerous causes of fatal accidents and sadly it often takes a truck accident lawsuit to uncover the evidence that leads to the contributing factors and negligence behind such a serious auto accident.
Don’t be a victim twice. Get help when it matters most and speak to an experienced lawyer today!
Reasons 18-Wheelers Cause Car Accidents
1. Failure to check blind spots when changing lanes.
An 18-wheeler truck is a large and heavy vehicle that requires more space to maneuver than a standard car. The truck’s size and weight also create a larger blind spot than a car, making it difficult for the truck driver to see cars in the lanes adjacent to them. This is especially true when the truck is changing lanes.
When an 18-wheeler is changing lanes, it is important for the driver to check their blind spots before doing so. If the truck driver does not do this, they may not be aware of a car in the adjacent lane and may move into it without warning. This can lead to an accident, as the car may not be able to react in time to avoid a collision with the truck. Additionally, because the truck is so large and heavy, the resulting impact can be catastrophic.
In order to avoid this type of accident, it is important for truck drivers to be aware of their blind spots and check them before changing lanes. This will help ensure that they are aware of any cars that may be in the adjacent lane and can take the appropriate action to avoid a collision.
2. Driving while fatigued or distracted.
Fatigue and distraction can be major contributing factors to an 18-wheeler truck causing a car accident. When a driver is fatigued, they are more likely to experience slower reaction times, have difficulty focusing, and make poor decisions. This can lead to dangerous driving behaviors such as failing to yield, speeding, or sudden lane changes.
Distraction can also be a major contributing factor to an 18-wheeler truck causing an accident. Distracted driving behaviors can include talking on the phone, texting, eating, drinking, playing with the radio, or adjusting the GPS. These distractions can cause the driver to take their eyes off the road, making them less aware of their surroundings and the other vehicles on the road. This can lead to the driver making reckless decisions or missing important cues such as traffic signs or signals.
Both of these behaviors can lead to an 18-wheeler truck causing a car accident. The large size and weight of the 18-wheeler truck can cause devastating damage to any smaller vehicle it collides with, due to its sheer mass and force. With the truck being so large and heavy, it would take a lot of time and distance for the driver to bring it to a complete stop if they were distracted or fatigued. This could easily lead to an accident, since the truck would not have enough time to react and avoid the collision.
3. Speeding or reckless driving.
An 18-wheeler truck is a large, heavy vehicle that requires a great deal of skill and experience to operate safely. When an 18-wheeler is speeding or driving recklessly, the driver is more likely to lose control of the vehicle and cause an accident. The size and weight of the truck means that it takes longer to slow down than a smaller, lighter vehicle, making it difficult to avoid a crash. Additionally, the size of the truck and its load can cause it to jackknife or rollover, which can cause more severe damage and potentially more injuries to the occupants of the other vehicle. Additionally, the truck’s large blind spots can make it difficult for the driver to spot oncoming traffic, increasing the risk of a collision. Finally, the speed of the truck can make it difficult for other drivers to react and avoid a crash. All of these factors combined create a situation where an 18-wheeler truck that is speeding or driving recklessly can cause a serious accident.
4. Overloaded cargo that causes the truck to be less maneuverable.
An 18-wheeler truck that is overloaded with cargo can cause a car accident for several reasons. First, an overloaded truck is more difficult to maneuver due to its increased weight. This can create problems when making turns or changing lanes, as the driver may not be able to react quickly enough to avoid a collision. Additionally, an overloaded truck will have a harder time stopping quickly, as the brakes will be working harder to slow down the increased weight of the truck. This can result in the truck not being able to stop in time to avoid a collision. Finally, an overloaded truck may be more difficult to control due to the increased momentum created by the increased weight. This can lead to the truck veering outside of its lane, which can cause a collision with another vehicle. An overloaded truck can create a situation where a car accident is more likely to occur.
5. Improperly secured cargo that can become unsecured and create a hazard.
When an 18-wheeler is transporting cargo, it is essential that the cargo is properly secured. If the cargo is not securely fastened, it can become unsecured during transit and create a hazard. An unsecured load can cause a variety of problems that can lead to a car accident. For example, if the cargo shifts in the truck, it can cause the truck to become unbalanced and lead to the truck swerving or veering off the road. Additionally, unsecured cargo can fall off the truck and onto the road, which can cause a hazard for other drivers. In some cases, the cargo may even fall onto the car causing significant damage or injury. In any of these scenarios, an improperly secured cargo can create a serious risk for other drivers and can lead to a car accident.
6. Poorly maintained brakes or other truck components.
Poorly maintained brakes, tires, suspension systems, steering systems, and engines can all create a situation where an 18-wheeler truck would cause a car accident. An 18-wheeler truck is a large and heavy piece of machinery, and when it is poorly maintained, it can create a dangerous situation. Poorly maintained brakes can cause a truck to take longer to stop. This increased stopping distance can lead to a collision with another vehicle if the driver does not have enough time to react. Poorly maintained tires can also cause a truck to skid, which can lead to a collision if the driver does not have enough time to react. Poorly maintained suspension systems can cause the truck to sway, which can lead to a driver losing control of the truck and colliding with another vehicle. Poorly maintained steering systems can cause the truck to drift, which can lead to a collision if the driver does not have enough time to react. Poorly maintained engines can cause a truck to stall, which can lead to a collision if the driver does not have enough time to react.
7. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol greatly impairs an individual’s ability to think and act in a safe and responsible manner. This is especially true when it comes to operating a large and powerful vehicle such as an 18-wheeler. Operating an 18-wheeler requires a high level of skill, coordination, and awareness of the road and other drivers. When an individual is impaired by drugs or alcohol, they are unable to possess the necessary skills and awareness to safely operate an 18-wheeler.
Drugs and alcohol can slow down reaction time, distort vision, and impair motor coordination. All of these effects can make it more difficult for an impaired driver to control the 18-wheeler, recognize potential hazards on the road, and take necessary evasive action when needed. Impaired drivers are also more likely to become distracted, take unnecessary risks, and make bad decisions that can lead to an accident.
The large size and weight of an 18-wheeler can also be a factor in an accident caused by a driver under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This is because an 18-wheeler can cause much more damage to other vehicles and property due to its size and weight. An impaired driver is more likely to lose control of the vehicle, causing it to drift into other lanes, collide with other vehicles, or even roll over. The damage caused by an 18-wheeler in an accident is often much greater than that caused by a smaller vehicle, and can result in serious injury or death. An 18-wheeler operator that is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol creates a situation where an accident is much more likely to occur.
8. Inadequate turn signals or other lighting.
An 18-wheeler that has inadequate turn signals or other lighting can create a dangerous situation for both the truck driver and other drivers on the road. If the truck driver is unable to properly indicate turns or lane changes with their turn signals, other drivers on the road may not be aware of their intentions. Without adequate turn signals or lighting, other drivers may not be able to recognize the truck’s movements and react accordingly. This can lead to confusion and miscommunication between the 18-wheeler and other drivers on the road, resulting in a car accident. Additionally, inadequate lighting on the 18-wheeler can make it difficult for other drivers to see the truck and its movements at night, creating further risk for accidents. Poorly lit 18-wheelers can also make it difficult for drivers to estimate the size and speed of the truck, creating a situation where drivers may be unable to react in time to avoid a collision. All of these reasons create a situation where an 18-wheeler truck can cause a car accident if proper precautions are not taken.
9. Not allowing enough stopping distance between vehicles.
An 18-wheeler that does not allow enough stopping distance between vehicles is a serious hazard on the roads. When an 18-wheeler is traveling at high speeds, its size and weight can create an enormous amount of kinetic energy, making it difficult for the driver to stop quickly. If an 18-wheeler follows too closely behind a car and does not allow enough stopping distance between them, the car may suddenly brake or be forced to stop abruptly due to a stop sign, traffic light, or another unforeseen circumstance. This sudden stop can cause the 18-wheeler to plow into the back of the car, resulting in a serious accident.
The risk of an accident is further increased when the 18-wheeler is traveling on a steep hill. The physics of motion dictate that it will take longer for a large, heavy vehicle to stop on a steep hill due to its increased momentum. If an 18-wheeler is following too closely behind a car on a hill and the car suddenly brakes, the 18-wheeler is likely to hit the car, causing a significant amount of damage to both vehicles and potentially injuring the passengers.
10. Improperly trained drivers.
An 18-wheeler truck is a large, heavy vehicle and requires a driver with more specialized training than a normal car driver. If a driver is not properly trained on how to operate an 18-wheeler, they could make mistakes that could lead to an accident. For example, an untrained driver might fail to check their blind spots when changing lanes, which could cause them to hit a car in their blind spot. They could also have difficulty maneuvering the truck in tight spaces, resulting in collisions with cars. Additionally, they may not be familiar with the size and weight of an 18-wheeler, causing them to overestimate how much space they have to maneuver. This could result in them taking a corner too quickly and hitting a car. In addition, an untrained driver may not be aware of the speed of an 18-wheeler and could end up driving too fast for conditions, leading to an accident. All of these mistakes can be avoided with proper training, however, if the driver is not properly trained, the potential for an accident increases significantly.
11. Poorly maintained roads or weather conditions.
An 18-wheeler truck is an extremely large and heavy vehicle, typically weighing anywhere from 20,000 to 80,000 pounds. Because of their size and weight, 18-wheeler trucks require a lot of force to stop and can take a great deal of time to slow down. This can create a potentially dangerous situation when the roads are poorly maintained or the weather conditions are unfavorable.
If the roads are not in good condition, such as having large potholes, uneven pavement, or other road hazards, it can make it difficult for the driver to keep the truck under control and can lead to an accident. Additionally, the truck may be more likely to sway or skid on wet or icy roads due to its size and weight, making it difficult to control the vehicle.
Poor weather conditions, such as heavy rain, fog, snow, or ice, can also lead to an 18-wheeler truck accident. These conditions can reduce visibility, making it difficult for the driver to see the road and obstacles ahead. The truck may also have a harder time stopping in wet or icy conditions due to the increased friction between the road surface and the tires.
In both cases, the potential for an 18-wheeler truck to cause an accident is increased due to the size and weight of the vehicle. Poorly maintained roads and unfavorable weather conditions can make it difficult for the driver to control the truck and can lead to an accident.
12. Driving too fast for the conditions of the road.
When an 18-wheeler truck is driving too fast for the conditions of the road, it can be extremely dangerous and lead to an accident. The size and weight of an 18-wheeler make it difficult to stop quickly or turn sharply. If the truck is traveling at a high speed, it may not be able to slow down or turn in time to avoid a collision with a smaller vehicle. This can cause the smaller vehicle to be crushed or pushed off the road. Additionally, the momentum of the 18-wheeler can cause it to jackknife or rollover, which can result in even more serious vehicle damage and injury.
The driver of the 18-wheeler also needs to take into account the conditions of the road. If the road is wet or icy, the truck will take longer to stop or turn, so the driver should slow down to give themselves more time to react. Additionally, if the road is narrow or there are many curves, the driver should be aware of their speed and slow down to make sure they can navigate safely.
13. Not following traffic laws or ignoring posted signs.
When an 18-wheeler truck fails to obey traffic laws or ignores posted signs, it creates a dangerous situation that can cause a car accident. For example, if an 18-wheeler truck fails to slow down at a stop sign, it can easily cause a crash with a car that is trying to cross the intersection. The size of the truck makes it difficult to stop quickly and can easily cause a collision with the car. If the truck does not obey the speed limit, it can cause a car to slam into it and be seriously injured or even killed. If an 18-wheeler truck driver fails to use their turn signals or brakes when turning or stopping, it can cause a car accident. Without the proper signals, a car in the same lane may not be aware of the 18-wheeler’s intentions and can easily be caught off guard and cause a crash. By not following traffic laws or ignoring posted signs, an 18-wheeler truck can create a dangerous situation that can easily cause a car accident.
14. Not using the appropriate size of truck for the job.
An 18-wheeler truck is much larger and heavier than a typical car, and its size and weight can create a dangerous situation on the road if it is not used in the appropriate situation. Because of its size, an 18-wheeler truck can cause a car accident if it is not used in the proper situation. For example, if an 18-wheeler truck is used to transport a load that is too large or too heavy for the truck, it can cause the truck to become unstable, or it can cause the truck to have difficulty maneuvering in traffic. This can lead to the truck not being able to accelerate or decelerate as quickly as a smaller vehicle, which can cause a dangerous situation in which the truck could collide with another vehicle on the road. In addition, the size of the truck can also create a situation in which the truck takes up more of the road than a smaller vehicle, and this can cause a car accident if the truck is not driven with caution. Therefore, it is important to use the appropriate size of truck for the job, in order to avoid creating an unnecessarily dangerous situation on the road.
15. Not conducting regular maintenance and inspections of the truck.
An 18-wheeler truck that has not been properly maintained and inspected can create a dangerous situation on the road. The truck’s brakes, tires, engine, and other components are essential for a safe and controlled journey. Without proper maintenance and inspection, these components can wear down or malfunction, leading to a lack of control, difficulty stopping, and other unsafe conditions. This can lead to a car accident, as the truck may be unable to stop or maneuver around other vehicles in time. Additionally, if the brakes are not working properly, the truck may be unable to stop in time if a car suddenly appears in front of it.
16. Making sharp turns or sudden maneuvers.
An 18-wheeler truck can create a hazardous situation when it makes a sharp turn or sudden maneuver because of its large size and weight. 18-wheeler’s are large vehicles that can weigh up to 80,000 lbs. With such a large mass, it requires more time and distance to slow down or stop than a smaller vehicle. This means that when an 18-wheeler makes a sharp turn or sudden maneuver, it is more difficult for the driver to control the vehicle and keep it on the road.
The trailer of an 18-wheeler is also longer than a standard car, which makes it harder for the driver to see what is around them and anticipate potential hazards. This increases the risk of the truck not being able to safely navigate tight turns and sudden maneuvers.
When an 18-wheeler truck tries to make a sharp turn or sudden maneuver, it can easily skid off the road, go into the wrong lane, or hit the curb. This increases the risk of a collision with other vehicles, pedestrians, or objects on the side of the road, which can lead to serious injuries or fatalities. Additionally, the large size of an 18-wheeler truck can cause it to block the road, preventing other vehicles from passing, which can lead to rear-end collisions, pile-ups or other types of accidents.
17. Not accounting for the size and weight of the truck when turning.
An 18-wheeler is a large, heavy vehicle and when it turns, it is important to account for its size and weight. If the driver fails to do this, the truck may take up more than one lane when turning or may cut the corner too tight, both of which can cause a car accident. For example, if the truck driver turns too sharply, the truck may cross into the opposite lane, resulting in a head-on collision with an oncoming vehicle. Additionally, the truck’s size may cause it to block multiple lanes when making a turn. If a car is in the lane to the side of the truck, the truck may block the car’s view of oncoming traffic, causing a collision.
18. Not accounting for the size and weight of the truck when merging onto the highway.
When an 18-wheeler is merging onto the highway, it is important for the driver to pay close attention to the speed and distance of the vehicles around them. If the truck does not account for the size and weight of the truck when merging, it can create an extremely dangerous situation for other drivers on the highway. This is because the 18-wheeler will take up more room on the road, require more time to accelerate, and may not be able to slow down quickly enough to avoid a collision. Furthermore, the truck’s size and weight can cause the car to be pushed off the road or even crushed in the event of a collision. Therefore, if an 18-wheeler does not take the necessary precautions when merging onto the highway, it can create a situation that could easily lead to a car accident. The driver of the truck should be aware of the size and weight of the vehicle and adjust their speed and distance accordingly to ensure the safety of other drivers.