Commercial carriers are the lifeblood of American commerce. A typical 18-wheeler will stack up 100,000 miles in a single year. The bulk conveyance of massive amount of goods across long distances is often only feasible by truck. The trucking industry has many cost benefits over airlines and trains, and as a result there is a great demand for drivers. These trucks are subject to a great deal of both federal and state regulation. Despite the regulation, trucking accidents occur every day, causing immense property damage and injuries.
The Deadly Costs of Trucking Accidents
Without a doubt, getting into an accident with a commercial truck can be disastrous. The average car weighs about 4,000 pounds, or about two tons. A tractor-trailer carrying a load can weigh as much as 40 tons – twenty times the size of your car. Put that much weight in motion, and it is capable of destroying almost anything in its way. Out-of-control trucks have been known to take out bridges and even buildings. Worse, when trucks collide with automobiles, passengers can suffer disastrous injuries: spinal and brain injuries, paralysis, and even death.
In 2014 a total of 3,660 people died in trucking accidents — a sixteen percent increase over 2009. A full 83% of the fatalities were people in other vehicles rather than the truck driver. Where two-vehicle crashes occur where one vehicle is a large truck and the other is a passenger car, 97% of the fatalities are in the passenger vehicle.
If you’ve been involved in a trucking accident it is important to retain highly experienced legal counsel, even if you think you may have been at fault. State and federal laws determining what is safe truck operation are complex, and most carriers and their insurance providers employ extremely aggressive lawyers who are experienced and ready to tear your claim down to a minimum — or to nothing at all. It is important to work with an attorney who has experience in investigating truck accidents and obtaining recovery on behalf of injured passengers.
Factors That May Be Involved in a Trucking Accident
There are many factors involved in in a trucking accident and a good deal of them are the truck driver’s responsibility. A few brief examples:
- Truck braking capability
- Illegal weight of truck
- Poor truck maintenance, especially tires, brakes and lights
- Truck driver fatigue and hour-log violations
- Unqualified or unlicensed truck drivers
- Use of cocaine or amphetamines/methamphetamines used to keep awake
- Legal over-the-counter stimulants used to keep awake
- Mechanical violations other than as noted above, such as steering and axle maintenance
- Vision or angle-of-view impairment
Don’t Leave Wrongful Trucking Accident Lawsuits to Inexperienced Lawyers
The Hershewe Law Firm, P.C., based in Joplin, Missouri, has several experienced truck accident lawyers who understand how emotionally and financially devastating a trucking accident can be for you and your loved ones. Our duty to our clients is to help them to seek justice and full compensation, based upon the facts in the case.
While some cases result in injuries so severe that the victim can never be restored to the healthy condition enjoyed prior to the accident, our team can help you pick up the pieces of your life and pursue fair compensation. Never leave that job in the hands of inexperienced lawyers. The insurance companies and large trucking company attorneys are tough. We fight hard for justice for you. Call us now for a free consultation at 417-999-9999.