Trucking accidents happen on major roadways every day, claiming the lives of 5,000 Americans each and every year. Due to their sheer size and power, tractor trailers have the ability to cause colossal damage in the event of an auto accident. Driving a truck demands the experience to properly handle all possible road conditions and traffic situations. There are several ways in which a truck driver can lose control of the vehicle, whether it be because of careless driving, lack of experience, fatigue, or improper brake handling. Not all accidents involving trucks are major but the potential risks make it wise to be cautious of the location and behavior of trucks on the road.
When driving alongside or behind a truck, it is important for other vehicles on the road to maintain a safe distance from trucks and 18 wheelers. One common type of trucking accident is an underride accident. This type of accident accounts for nearly half of the fatalities in trucking accidents involving passenger cars. Underride accidents occur when a vehicle fails to stop and drives underneath the rear end or side of the tractor trailer.
Head on Collisions
The extreme force carried by large tractor trailers in a head on collision leads to serious levels of destruction and almost always catastrophic injuries or fatalities for the passengers of the other vehicles involved. Head on collisions between passenger cars and tractor trailers have the highest fatality rate of all trucking accidents. Death, severe brain injury, and paralysis are most often the result of a head on collision trucking accident, making it a devastating event for all involved.
Truck rollover accidents occur due to the high center of gravity in tractor trailers. There are two categories of rollover accidents: tripped and untripped. Tripped rollover accidents are caused by an outside source, such as colliding with another vehicle or hitting a curb. Untripped rollover accidents are the result of the truck driver’s unsafe driving practices, such as erratic steering, exceeding the speed limit, or misjudging roadway conditions. When a commercial truck enters a curve at high speed, a truck driver has no control once the vehicle begins to roll. Although speed can greatly attribute to a truck rolling over, it is possible for them to do so at as little as 10 miles per hour if the rear rig jackknifes.
Jackknifing truck accidents occur when the drive axle and the steering axle fail, resulting in the truck only being able to stop once it reaches a 90 degree angle. It is known as a “jackknife” because the angle of the truck resembles the blade of a pocketknife folding into its holder. This type of trucking accident is often caused by equipment failure, poor braking, or averse road conditions such as a patch of ice on the roadway. The most common cause of jackknife truck accidents is improper braking or excessive speed which impedes the adequate time needed for large trucks to slow down. Jackknifing may also be caused if a truck downshifts at inappropriate times.
The Law Offices of Edelstein Martin & Nelson, LLP: Experienced Delaware Truck Accident Lawyers Fighting for the Rights of Injured Victims
If you or a loved one has been injured in a trucking accident in Delaware or Pennsylvania, the law offices of Edelstein Martin & Nelson, LLP will handle your case with experience and compassion throughout every step of the process. Our personal injury lawyers will utilize years of experience handling truck accident lawsuits in order to fight for the maximum compensation you deserve. Call us today at (302)-295-5050 or toll free at (800) 300-0909 to schedule a free consultation with a qualified Delaware truck accident lawyer. You may also contact us by submitting an online inquiry.