With a passenger vehicle weighing an average of 4,000 pounds and an 18-wheeler about 80,000 pounds, it’s understandable that passenger vehicle occupants can be left with serious injuries after colliding with a truck. Missouri drivers should know what the five most common causes of truck accidents are.
At the top are those crashes caused by driver error, usually on the part of the passenger vehicle driver. Errors can range from drowsy and inattentive driving to speeding and tailgating. The second cause is poor vehicle maintenance. Truckers may ignore the rule requiring them to inspect their truck before every shift, and the result is a higher risk for crashes due to things like cracked windshields and worn brake pads.
Defective parts are the third cause, and oftentimes, these defects can escape the notice of even those truckers who follow all safety regulations. For this reason, the parts manufacturer or the one who installed the part may be held liable instead of the trucker.
Fourth, many truckers cause a crash because they are too inexperienced to drive safely in bad weather. It’s not unusual for such truckers to hydroplane or jackknife in such conditions. Lastly, accidents can happen because of improperly loaded cargo, which can tip a truck over, or improperly secured cargo, which can spill out.
Victims of truck accidents who wish to file a claim against the trucking company may want a lawyer to assist them. Trucking companies themselves have a legal team that will work hard to fight claims or force victims into a lower settlement than they deserve. Victims may start by having their case assessed according to this state’s comparative negligence law. The lawyer may bring in third parties to gather proof of the other side’s negligence before going on to negotiations.