Young & McCarthy LLP

All the things that make semitrucks so dangerous

If you feel a little wary while driving near a semi truck, you’re right to be concerned. Semi truck accidents can cause a colossal amount of damage to other vehicles, roadways and the drivers involved in them.

Here are just a few of the reasons semi trucks are such a big danger to our roads.


A conventional 18-wheel semi truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds in the U.S. When a vehicle of this weight is traveling at high speeds of 50 miles per hour or more, an impact can be fatal for the driver an others involved.

This weight also makes these trucks less likely to move if another vehicle hits them. This is part of the reason underride accidents are often fatal. An underride accident happens when a smaller vehicle rear ends a large semi truck. Due to the height and weight of the semi, the car rear-ending the vehicle can drive into the undercarriage of the semi without any residence.


Speaking of drivers, truck drivers often face more challenges than your average automobile driver. Research has shown that sitting for extended periods of time can lead to immediate and long-term health concerns. Additionally, a trucker’s diet usually consists of whatever preserved food rest stops have to offer. These issues combined with the pressure to stick to reach their destination on time can result in one very fatigued truck driver.

Drivers who feel sluggish, sleepy or have low blood sugar will have more difficulty controlling their vehicle. Fatigue may also cause drivers to miss important signs, signals and hazards.


Because of the size and shape of semi trucks, it can be more difficult for drivers to see other vehicles beside or behind them. This can make merging lanes and quick stops very risky.

If you are ever driving behind a semi truck, remember that if you can’t see the driver’s mirrors, there is no way to know for sure that the driver knows you are there. Making sudden moves in a semi truck's blind spot could make you liable for injury or damage costs if an accident ensues.

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