Articles Posted in Truck Accidents

At one time or another, most drivers have been passed by or stuck behind a large truck hauling a trailer enclosed by a loose tarp or an open bed of rock, gravel or rip-rap. Oftentimes, the truck has a sign that reads, “NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR BROKEN WINDSHIELDS,” suggesting such vehicles are protected from the harm they may cause on the roadway. Not true.

Commercial truck drivers have a duty to ensure the safety of their cargo and equipment. Federal regulations provide that commercial truck drivers must perform a safety inspection. No shipper can force a driver to accept a load the driver believes is unsafe. Nonetheless, a shipper may face liability if a defect in the load could not be uncovered by the driver through ordinary observation.

Commercial Truck Drivers Careless loading and hauling of cargo and equipment can cause chipped paint, dents and broken windshields. However, sometimes serious and catastrophic injuries and even death can occur when a a vehicle is struck by unsecured cargo or equipment, such as a crane boom, or must leave the road to avoid such dangers. Because many companies and their insurers will seek to shift the blame to the victim for purportedly following too closely or not taking equally dangerous evasive maneuvers, the only recourse in such situations may be to seek a legal remedy.

Not every car accident can be cut and dry to assess. In fact, many multi-vehicle car accidents can be difficult to sort out and assign any kind of culpability. One car accident in Indiana is currently being investigated as there were six vehicles involved.

The multi-vehicle accident happened around 6:30 p.m. on a Saturday evening. According to an initial assessment of the accident, a pickup truck was westbound and hit several cars that were at an intersection. Then, the same pickup truck is believed to have hit another vehicle that was southbound at the time, although there is no word for sure as to what exactly unfolded.

Authorities said a van was pushed over a curb and a red pickup truck was in the center of the intersection when the incident was assessed. Two vehicles were also said to be smashed together in front of a service station. The crash in being investigated, and four people were injured in the melee. There was no word as to exact nature or severity of any injuries suffered.

When a driver runs a red light and smashes into another vehicle, the consequences can be far-reaching and life-altering for those in that driver’s path. This scenario is the cause of the many car accidents in Indiana. One such accident recently resulted in a man suffering critical injuries.

The accident occurred on a Sunday night as a man drove a Hummer through a red light. His vehicle struck another vehicle operated by a 32-year-old man. The victim suffered critical injuries as his vehicle was pushed into a ditch, causing him to be trapped in his vehicle until help arrived at the scene.

The driver of the Hummer left the scene. Witnesses said the Hummer was going roughly 80 mph. Police are currently working to track down the owner of the vehicle. The family of the man who was seriously injured have stated it hopes someone with information comes forward.

The sheer force and unexpected nature of a head-on car accident can leave devastating consequences behind for the injured and for the family of victims who die as a result. Head-on car accidents in Indiana in particular are responsible for countless injuries and can be deadly for innocent victims. One recent head-on car accident took the life of a 57-year-old innocent driver.

The accident occurred on a Sunday night, roughly around 9:30 p.m. A 61-year-old man was driving north on the highway. For some reason, his car drove left of the center line and hit another vehicle head-on. That vehicle was driven by the 57-year-old woman.

That woman was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. The man who hit her vehicle was air lifted from the crash. He was being treated for serious injuries. There is currently an investigation into the accident, but police indicate they do not yet know if alcohol or drugs played a role in the car accident.

When drivers come upon stopped or slowed traffic on the road, quick reaction may be needed to avoid an accident. Truck accidents in particular can be devastating and lead to injuries due to the sheer size of trucks on the road compared to the other vehicles that share those roadways. One recent truck accident in Indiana led to injuries for two people in another vehicle.

The accident took place on a stretch of road on a Saturday morning. There was slowed or stopped traffic on the roadway when a Freightliner driven by a 26-year-old came upon the scene. The Freightliner hit a car with a driver and passenger.

The car that was rear-ended was a four-door Mazda. Both people inside who were injured were 23 years old. One was taken to a nearby hospital while the second injured passenger was lifelined to a hospital in Indianapolis. There was no word as to any citations or charges against the driver of the truck that hit the Mazda. There was also no word as to the extent of the injuries suffered by the women.

Any kind of vehicle collision can spell disaster for innocent drivers and passengers traveling on the roadways. When the situation involves truck accidents, the results can be even more devastating for innocent victims due to the sheer size and force of tractor-trailer trucks traveling on Indiana highways. Despite the unpredictability of truck accidents, there are common reasons or situations that may make a truck accident more likely.

One reason a truck may lose control and wreck into an innocent victim in a car is that trucks sometimes have an unbalanced load. This can lead to swerving and tipping of a truck. Also, when an accident occurs and tipping over of a load results, that in itself can pose a hazard on the road and may endanger people who were not even involved in the original crash.

Another common reason a truck may crash is driver fatigue. While drivers are only supposed to drive for a certain number of hours, some may be tempted by incentives to go above that amount, putting others at risk. Equipment failure can also lead to truck accidents. This can include faulty brakes or improperly maintained tires.

When it comes to improving driving safety on our nation’s roads, there are multiple approaches that can be taken. Perhaps the most proactive demographic to improving safety is the trucking industry. In addition to providing training to drivers, there are also regulations in place that outline activities that drivers can and cannot engage in. For example, they cannot drive without taking a certain amount of time off to rest.

Another approach that is taken in ensuring safety in the industry involves the equipment. Recently four trucking organizations charged with improving safety requested that the federal government make rules regarding the use of crash sensors on big rigs. The safety organizations that made the request via petition to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration include:

  • Road Safe America
  • Center for Auto Safety
  • Truck Safety Coalition
  • Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety

More specifically, the organizations are seeking to make it mandatory that new buses and large trucks, with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 pounds or more, have forward collision avoidance and mitigation braking systems installed. These systems both warn drivers when they are getting too close to another vehicle and actually apply the brakes when necessary. Though available, since the use of the system is currently optional, few trucks actually have it.

Not every accident can be chalked up to chance or inevitability. Some accidents can be prevented if those believed responsible take care to obey the rules of the road. Many truck accidents in Indiana are caused by specific violations on the part of the trucking company, drivers or other entities. While there are strict laws and regulations regarding the trucking industry, when a violation has led to an accident, accident victims may benefit from gaining an understanding of their legal rights.

One violation that can easily lead to an accident is a load problem. Trucks can only carry certain size loads. If a load is too much weight, the truck can tip and an accident can occur. Unbalanced loads often lead to the same result. In fact, if a truck tips due to a load issue, the spilled cargo can also be a source of injury.

Trucks must be properly maintained. This maintenance is strictly regulated. If safety equipment is missing or a truck is not maintained properly, that vehicle can be moving hazard and put everyone on or near the road at risk. Driver error can also be to blame. If a driver is fatigued or driving more than trucking regulations permit, that driver and the driver’s employer can be held liable for monetary damages that result.

While any type of motor vehicle accident can be potentially dangerous for the victims involved, truck accidents can be especially devastating. They often result in serious injuries and/or fatalities. The sheer size of trucks on Indiana roads make these collisions more dangerous overall. However, vehicle size is not the only factor that can contribute to truck accidents.

Issues involving the truck itself are common. The balance of the load can be a major factor in the safe operation of a truck on the highway. Badly loaded or overloaded trucks can overturn, even if a driver is trying his or her best to operate the truck in the midst of traffic. Defective truck parts create potentially disastrous situations for anyone on or near the road.

Even if the truck is properly loaded, driver negligence or recklessness may cause an accident. Truck driver fatigue is a significant concern on Indiana roadways. The use of drugs and/or alcohol is also responsible for a significant number of tragedies.

The aftermath of a truck accident can be devastating, costly and downright frightening for any victim involved. While the first step in dealing with truck accidents on Indiana roadways is to ensure anyone injured gets immediate medical care, there are other matters to consider. Any possible safety violations on the part of the truck driver or the trucker’s employer must be investigated and any evidence of negligence or wrongdoing needs to be preserved.

Issues with the actual truck or load may be the source of a violation. For example, if the truck is loaded improperly or overloaded, it may swerve and cause an accident. The tires and/or brakes could be defective also. This is a significant safety risk that can easily lead to an accident.

The truck may be safe and in line with all standards, yet the driver may be the source of lax safety and the cause of an accident. Driver fatigue is a common source of truck accidents on the roadways. There are very stringent safety regulations regarding truck driver hours and activity, and any violation of these regulations is a significant risk to others.

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