Many 18 wheeler accidents happen because of negligence. The driver of the 18 wheeler might be putting themselves in a situation where they are driving long hours to meet deadlines and do not rest or are distracted by using their cell phones. When accidents occur from these types of negligences and people get hurt, the responsible party for the accident will need to be held accountable for all of the damages caused such as personal injuries and property damages.
Becoming a victim of an 18-wheeler accident could be detrimental to a human life. The victim does not deserve to be left alone with all the medical expenses and psychological anguish that the accident can bring the victim and their families. It is vital that the victim becomes compensated for their damages with the help of a Miami 18 wheeler accident attorney from Percy Martinez Law Firm who consist of personal injury lawyers in Miami.
When An 18-Wheeler Gets in an Accident with an Automobile
When a person looks at an 18 wheeler and a passenger vehicle, the obvious difference is the size of it. When the size of a vehicle is large, its blind spot will be much larger as well. With the blind spot being larger, cars that travel in the 18 wheelers blind spot are at a greater risk. Many times, a commercial truck will not be able to see upcoming traffic while it is merging onto the highway due to its blind spot. The 18 wheeler might just turn into the vehicle unexpectedly.
Regular vehicles and 18 wheelers have many differences which are dangerous aspects when an accident occurs. Some of those disparities include the following:
- An average passenger vehicle weighs 5,000 pounds while an 18 wheeler can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. That’s a 75,000-pound difference
- The engine of an 18 wheeler is 6 times larger than a regular car
- It takes the 18 wheeler 40 times more time to stop than a vehicle
- The fatalities of all 18 wheeler amount to 9%
Even if the driver of an 18 wheeler notices a danger and tries to stop, the time it takes to break may not occur in time. These differences show just how dangerous getting in an accident with an 18 wheeler can be. The driver of the 18 wheeler needs to pay very close attention when they spot someone entering their blind spot or when they are merging on the highway.
What Accidents Can Occur With An 18 Wheeler?
An accident can occur in many forms. Some types of accidents are more devastating than others, especially against an 18 wheeler. Some accidents that can lead to a lawsuit include:
Read end accidents tend to occur when a driver is distracted. Being rear ended by an 18 wheeler can literally crush the vehicle from behind. Any passenger or the driver in the vehicle can potentially die from the accident. Other times, the driver of an 18 wheeler might fall asleep while driving causing a rear-end collision.
Lost Cargo Load
When cargo is not properly secured in trucks, it can fall off while the truck is being driven. Trucks can carry large cargo and unsafe materials. If this cargo falls off while a truck driver is driving, it can hit another vehicle in the process, causing a grave accident. Even if the cargo does not hit another vehicle at the time of the cargo falling from the truck, it can remain on the road and potentially create an accident if a driver is not aware of the road ahead of them. The people that load the cargo have to make sure that is properly secured before allowing the truck driver to leave.
Head On Accident
Head on collisions are the most destructive accidents that occur. When a head-on collision happens with an 18-wheeler, the result is most certainly fatal, especially if a person is not wearing a seat belt. The people in the vehicle may be crushed or ejected from the vehicle. Head on collisions happens for a variety of reasons. The driver of the truck might drift into another lane due to a loss of control of the truck.
Wide Turn Accident
To maneuver an 18 wheeler, the driver has to undergo certain training and acquire licensing. It is not easy to turn with such big trucks. When the truck driver steers left prior to making a right turn and does not do so precisely, it can hit the cars that are waiting in the opposite intersection. A truck driver has to know how to properly turn to avoid accidents from occurring.
Underride accidents happen when a vehicle hits the side or back of the trailer of the truck. These types of accidents could be caused for a number of reasons. The driver of the truck may have driven right in front of the passenger car and driver the truck’s trailer as a result.
18-wheeler Accident Statistics
These are some statistics reported by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that has occurred with 18 wheelers:
- Some type of error or negligence like speeding or distracted driving amounts to over 30% of 18 wheeler accidents
- 87% of fatal truck accidents that occurred in 2010 were caused by the truck driver crossing the center traffic line
- 3% of 18 wheeler collisions rolled over in 2010
- 3% of fatal truck accidents found that the driver had a 1 alcohol level higher than allowed
18-wheeler Accident Verdicts
18 Wheeler Accident Severely Injured
A woman was awarded $950,000 for her injuries sustained after an 18 wheeler hit her from behind. The woman sustained extensive back injuries requiring her to perform a surgery.
Head-On 18 wheeler Collision
In 2008, a couple was hit head-on by an 18 wheeler. The husband was fatally wounded, while the wife sustained severe injuries that left her paralyzed from the waist down. The driver of the truck fell asleep on the road and drove into the opposite lane. The family was awarded $5 million.
Truck Driver Falls Asleep on The Road
The family of a wrongful death victim by an 18 wheeler was awarded $500,000. The truck driver was taking a certain medication for a medical condition that he had that caused him to fall asleep while driving. It led to the death of a 26-year-old woman.
18 Wheeler Miami Accident Attorneys
The lawyers at Percy Martinez Law Firm know about the laws and regulations that truck drivers must uphold. When a violation occurs, accidents happen. These accidents can lead to fatalities and severe injuries. Every driver should drive responsibly and a truck driver needs to ensure that they follow all the rules associated with maneuvering an 18 wheeler. No victim deserves to suffer at the hands of a negligent truck driver.
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