What are the Most Common Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents?
Any type of auto accident can result in injuries or fatalities. However, those involving semi-trucks and other large commercial vehicles are especially dangerous. With semi-trucks weighing fifteen to twenty times more than the average car, it is easy to understand how the driver of a small passenger car would suffer injuries or even death in a semi-truck collision.
To prevent such accidents, it is imperative to understand their common causes. The following details the most common causes of semi-truck accidents, beginning with the most often cited reason for these often deadly crashes, driver, or human error.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a semi-truck accident, contact the New Mexico truck accident attorneys at Liles White for a free case evaluation.
Human Error is the Most Common Cause of Semi-Truck Accidents
Driver or human error is the most common cause of semi-truck accidents. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), eighty-eight percent of truck-related crashes are due to driver’s error.
This can include:
- Failure to check blind spots;
- Driver confusion;
- Distracted driving;
- Driver fatigue;
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- Failure to secure loads;
- Failure to properly fill liquid loads;
- Failure to stop/slow down in time;
- Lack of training;
- Lack of truck maintenance;
- Failure to inspect/maintain brakes; and
- Failure to inspect/maintain tires.
Non-Human Error Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents
Non-human error can also result in semi-truck crashes. Non-human error includes but is not limited to:
- Poorly maintained roadways;
- Improperly placed road construction barriers;
- Poor weather conditions; and
- Mechanical failures due to faulty design or part or system defects.
Passenger Vehicle Safety Tips to Prevent Semi-Truck Accidents
Passenger vehicles are also a common cause of collisions with semi-trucks. To avoid a semi-truck accident, passenger vehicles should:
- Stay out of the “No-Zones.” These are the areas behind and beside a commercial truck where the truck driver has limited or zero visibility;
- Keep from changing lanes abruptly in front of a truck;
- Avoid maneuvering to the right of a truck that is making a right turn;
- Be careful when judging an approaching truck’s speed at an intersection and making a left turn in front of the truck;
- Merge properly into traffic, so a truck does not have to maneuver or brake quickly;
- Slow down or speed up when a truck begins to change lanes or merge;
- Pass safely providing a truck with sufficient headway;
- Avoid passing a truck that is being blown out of position by air turbulence or cross-wind;
- Avoid pulling into traffic from the roadside in front of a truck without accelerating sufficiently;
- Avoid driving between large trucks; and
- Avoid abandoning a vehicle in a travel lane or fail to get a disabled vehicle completely off the highway and onto the shoulder.
Contact an Experienced New Mexico Semi-Truck Accident Attorney
If you or someone you love is involved in a semi-truck accident, seek medical help immediately. Then speak with an experienced New Mexico semi-truck accident attorney like those at Liles White for information about your legal rights and holding any negligent parties responsible for your injuries and other accident-related losses.
The New Mexico personal injury attorneys at Liles White understand how trucking companies and their insurance providers operate and will fight to ensure you receive full and just compensation for your accident. Contact our offices in Santa Fe today to learn more about our full-service law firm and commitment to helping victims of semi-truck accidents like yourself recover from their injuries and move on to live their best possible lives.