There are five common causes of large truck crashes that California drivers should be aware of. The first cause is connected to everyone: driver error. In fact, 81% of truck crashes that involve driver error are the fault of passenger vehicle drivers, not truckers. Still, truckers are just as liable as other drivers to get behind the wheel drunk, drugged or drowsy. Speeding and distracted driving are other forms of negligence.
The second frequent cause is bad weather. Since 18-wheelers are heavy and take longer than other vehicles to come to a stop, truckers receive special training on how to brake on wet and icy roads. Inexperienced truckers, though, may cause their rig to hydroplane or even jackknife in such inclement weather.
Truckers may also neglect to inspect their truck before every shift. If they followed this rule, then they could prevent an accident by identifying any faulty components. Lack of maintenance is often attended by equipment failure, the fourth common factor in truck accidents. Sometimes, though, equipment can fail because of a defect that the manufacturer or the company selling the truck did not catch.
Fifth, accidents can happen because of improper cargo loading. There are industry-specific limits regarding the dimensions, size and weight of cargo as well as rules for securing it.
Whatever the cause of motor vehicle accidents that involve big rigs, victims may be left with catastrophic injuries. If they were not at fault, then they are entitled to compensation under personal injury law. Victims may speak with a lawyer about their chances of recovering damages. If retained, the lawyer may assist with every step, from finding evidence against the defendant to negotiating a settlement with the other side’s legal team. If a settlement is not forthcoming, then victims may litigate.