Tractor Trailers have eighteen wheels, weigh tens of thousands of pounds, and cause massive car wrecks that harm thousands of people every year.
Tractor-trailers are a common sight along Oklahoma’s highways. In our state alone, over 100 large trucks were involved in fatal car crashes in 2008. Frighteningly, this rate is higher than the national average for the same year.
Why the Risk?
There are several different reasons why these accidents occur in such large numbers. Driver fatigue is one of the top causes of commercial truck crashes in the United States. Typically truckers have to move large amounts of goods across the country in very limited time frames. This often leads to long hours spent in transit along the roadways with little time left to catch up on much-needed sleep.
Occasionally large commercial trucking companies have been known to cut corners regarding safety checks or to push their drivers to dangerous degrees to meet deadlines. These risky cost-cutting measures put everyone on the road at risk.
Operating a tractor-trailer is not easy. Although drivers are required to take specialty driving classes prior to operating an eighteen-wheeler, it is impossible to perfectly replicate all possible road conditions before setting new truckers loose on the roadways. With weights that can topple over 80,000 pounds, each vehicle can potentially cause a massive accident if operated unsafely. Couple this with fatigue, weather, and unsafe driving conditions and you have a recipe for disaster.
When the worst happens and tractor-trailers cause accidents, the injury most often occurs to the drivers of other vehicles on the road. According to a 2008 study, it was noted that over 11% of fatal car accidents involved a large commercial truck, and 97% of the deaths resulting from such accidents occurred to the driver of the other vehicle. It’s easy to see that when a normal-sized car takes on an eighteen-wheeler, the car is going to lose the battle.
Why You Need an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Large commercial trucking companies have legal teams and insurance companies at-the-ready to do everything in their power to avoid being held accountable for accidents caused by their fleet. Without proper representation from a qualified personal injury lawyer, it is very unlikely you will see fair compensation for your injuries. Remember that trucking is a high-stakes business, and the trucking companies want to pay out as little as possible in order to keep their profits high.
If you or a loved one is injured or even killed by an accident involving an 18 wheeler, it is important to seek counsel with an experienced personal injury attorney right away. Consultations are always free, and they do not get paid unless you receive money for your injuries, and pain and suffering. A personal injury lawyer will reconstruct the scene, hire experts to get to the facts, and make sure you aren’t taken advantage of after your ordeal. Sharing the road with 18 wheelers can be risky, receiving fair compensation after you‘re injured shouldn’t be.
This is a guest blog post from our attorney friends at Cariati Law