Some people become nervous when driving on the highway next to a large truck, and there’s a reason for it. Whether you call it an 18-wheeler, a semi, or a big rig, an accident with a truck can cause significantly more damage than one involving a typical passenger car. These trucks are an essential part of the American economy, and as the number of them on the road increases, the likelihood of an accident does too.
Causes of a Truck Accident
The biggest factor in a truck accident is its size. These trucks can be over 50 feet long and weight up to 80,000 pounds. The average car is roughly 13 feet long and about 4,000 pounds. The bigger vehicle requires more time to stop, makes wider turns, and has a much larger blind spot. When less-than-perfect road conditions exist, this is a recipe for disaster. For individuals who have been hurt, a truck accident lawyer can be just the person you need.
Often an accident is just that: accidental. However, other factors can be at play including mechanical problems with a vehicle, overtired or intoxicated drivers, speeding, and other preventable issues. Determining who was at fault – the driver, truck company, or manufacturer – takes some work.
Truck Accident Statistics
According to a study done by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, in 2010 there were 276,000 large trucks involved in a traffic accident. A total of 3,675 people were killed and 80,000 were injured. That number was an increase over the previous year.
Taking a closer look, what is important to note is that 73 percent of those injured and 76 percent of those killed were passengers of another vehicle. Although truck drivers are also among those hurt or killed, the risk weighs more heavily on those driving around them.
Hiring a Truck Accident Lawyer
If you have been involved in a vehicle accident with a big truck, it’s important to talk with a truck accident lawyer. Someone who specializes in this type of case will have experience and resources that are beneficial. You may be entitled to compensation for your losses.
Medical bills can pile up quickly, and time off from work can add to financial stress. Although you might not want one more thing to worry about, hiring a truck accident lawyer can make a big difference. He or she may be able to get you a higher settlement amount and quicker results. A lawyer can also make sure that documents are filed on time, and that supporting information is thorough. There is no reason to suffer when help is a phone call away. Contact a reputable lawyer or law firm for help.