A tractor-trailer colliding with an automobile is a much different kind of issue than when two cars collide. The significant size and weight of a semi-truck often lead to disastrous consequences in collisions. Each and every driver shares roadways, streets, and highways with tractor-trailer and truck drivers. This means that the potential for accidents involving cars and semi-trucks exists at all times.
The Devastating Impact of Tractor-Trailer Accidents
Semi-truck accidents can be dangerous and devastating. If your car gets into a collision with a larger vehicle, you may sustain a number of significant injuries. Tractor-trailer and truck accidents put motor vehicle drivers and passengers at more substantial risk for severe injuries like broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, back injuries, severe whiplash of the neck, internal bleeding, and even death. Additionally, the medical costs associated with these accidents can be significant, as these accidents are often quite severe. In addition to any immediate injuries sustained, you may have permanent injuries, disfigurement, scarring, or disability. You may even develop psychological injuries from the trauma associated with the accident, leading to phobias and fears of riding in cars, anxiety, PTSD, and depression.
Causes of Tractor-Trailer and Truck Accidents
There are numerous reasons why automobiles and big rigs get into accidents on the road. Sometimes they are the fault of the truck operator, while others are the car driver’s fault. Common reasons these accidents occur include:
- Drivers not following traffic laws
- Drowsy driving
- Distracted driving
- Driving in a truck or tractor-trailer driver’s blind spot
- Truck malfunctions caused by inadequate safety and maintenance
- Poor road conditions
- Improper lane changes
- Failing to use turn signals correctly
- Committing traffic offenses
Specific laws are in place to help decrease tractor-trailer and truck accidents. Theses include the number of hours a truck operator can drive per day, and when or how often they must take breaks. Unfortunately, not every semi-truck driver abides by these laws, and these rules don’t prevent every accident.
What to Do If You’re Injured in a Tractor-Trailer or Commercial Truck Accident
If you are involved in an accident with a -truck, immediately check for injuries to yourself and your passengers and seek medical attention, if necessary. Contact law enforcement officers to report the accident. If you are not injured, gather evidence at the scene of the accident. Take pictures of the accident scene and obtain essential information from the truck driver, including driver’s license information, insurance information, and their license plate number. If there are witnesses who stopped to help, obtain their information, as well, including their names, addresses, and phone numbers. This can be a significant advantage down the road.
How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
Once you know you are okay or have sought medical treatment if you aren’t, consult with a personal injury attorney. Tractor-trailer and truck accidents are quite different from regular car accidents. A personal injury attorney can work to investigate the accident for carelessness, recklessness, or negligence. All of this information can help to determine who was at fault for the accident and provide the basis for a lawsuit to recover financial compensation for your injuries and damages.