Collisions involving Tractor-trailers and other large commercial vehicles occur frequently throughout the U.S. Truck accidents were accountable for almost 4,000 deaths in 2014 alone, and the abundance of tractor-trailers on major U.S. roads and highways can pose a serious threat to occupants of smaller passenger vehicles.
Just last week in Oklahoma, a collision between a tractor-trailer and three other vehicles resulted in several injuries and one fatality.
According to Police, a tractor-trailer driver lost control of his vehicle after being distracted by something inside his truck. The tractor-trailer rear-ended a Freightliner, which then proceeded to hit the center wall and spill a load of pipes onto both east and westbound lanes of the Will Rogers Turnpike. At least two vehicles crashed after hitting the debris, and one motorist was fatally injured.
To read more about this story, click here.
There are many ways that a tractor-trailer accident can take place, and it is not always the fault of the truck driver. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety lists the following as common causes of tractor-trailer crashes:
- Failure to Brake in Time: Loaded tractor-trailers require 20-40 percent more distance than typical motor vehicles to come to a complete stop. In wet or slick road conditions, this percentage becomes even greater.
- Driver Fatigue: Truck drivers are prohibited from driving more than 11 hours at a time or more than 77 hours over a seven-day period. However, surveys show that trucking companies sometimes demand that truckers exceed these legal driving limits, leading to driver fatigue and slower reaction times.
- Failure to See Surrounding Vehicles: Tractor-trailers have larger blind spots than passenger vehicles, which can make it hard to truckers to see smaller cars on the road. A good rule of thumb: if you cannot see a truck driver’s side-view mirrors, they probably cannot see you.
- Distracted Driving: Just like all other drivers on the road, tractor-trailer drivers must keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel at all times. Especially in large trucks, driving while distracted can have devastating consequences.
- Unbalanced or Oversized Loads: When tractor-trailers are loaded improperly or forced to carry more cargo than their legal limit, it can jeopardize the safety of the truck driver, as well as all surrounding vehicles on the road.
- Faulty Safety Equipment: Tractor-trailers and other large commercial vehicles are required to undergo frequent safety testing. If trucks that failed to pass a safety inspection are allowed to remain in operation, it can lead to devastating accidents.
At Graves McLain, Tulsa Personal Injury law firm, we want all Oklahoma drivers to arrive at their destinations safely. If your or a loved one has been injured in an accident with a tractor-trailer that was not your fault, call Graves McLain right away at 918-359-6600.
When you call, you will speak with an experienced, compassionate Tulsa, Oklahoma Tractor Trailer Accident attorney absolutely FREE. Our dedicated legal team will investigate every detail of your accident and fight hard to protect your rights.
Your case and your injuries are serious. At Graves McLain, we treat them that way. If we take your case, you will never pay an attorney’s fee up front. In fact, you owe us nothing unless we recover for you.
At Graves McLain, we don’t get paid until you do.
Graves McLain – Serious Lawyers for Serious Injuries