Young & McCarthy LLP

Five common causes of tractor-trailer accidents

While most large truck accidents in Ohio are caused by the negligence of passenger vehicle drivers, not of truckers, there are still instances when truckers commit an error and cause a crash. Truckers may, for example, drive while drowsy, drunk, drugged or distracted by their phone. Driver error is just one of five common causes of large truck crashes.

The second cause is poor vehicle maintenance. Not only truckers but also their employers must have a regular maintenance schedule because driving with a cracked windshield or with worn brake pads is dangerous. Truckers have the added responsibility of checking their rig before every shift and filling out a vehicle maintenance report.

Equipment that is defective from the start is a third common factor in accidents. Those who would be to blame could include the parts manufacturer, the truck manufacturer or the crew that installed or repaired the parts.

A fourth factor can be inclement weather. If truckers do not slow down or use proper braking techniques in the midst of rain, snow or ice, they may skid, hydroplane or jackknife. Lastly, trucks come with specific guidelines for loading and securing cargo. Failure to follow them may result in cargo falling out. Trucking companies may avoid these issues through in-vehicle technology like cameras and sensors.

Passenger vehicle occupants who are injured in a truck crash may be left with severe injuries. However, they could be eligible for compensation under truck accident law if it can be proven that the other side was at fault. This is where a lawyer may come in handy. Personal injury lawyers might bring in investigators and other third parties to look into the crash and obtain proof of negligence. Lawyers may also have the ability to negotiate on victims' behalf for a settlement.

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