Commercial trucks are massive machines maintained and operated by real people. As a result of both of these factors, there is a lot that can go wrong. As with any type of auto accident, truck accidents can be caused by a variety of circumstances. There are, however, certain causes that are more common, including driver error and negligence. Whenever the cause of a truck accident is one that could have been prevented, injured victims will have a right to pursue a recovery of their damages by filing a personal injury claim.
Examples of the most common causes of 18-wheeler accidents include:
- Driver Fatigue & Impairment – Truck drivers who are tired or impaired by alcohol or drugs pose extreme dangers to others on public roadways. Fatigue and impairment can significantly slow reaction time and motor function, which elevates risk of accidents. Because a tired or impaired driver behind the wheel of a massive commercial vehicle is incredibly dangerous, there are numerous regulations in place to ensure that drivers are given proper breaks and that they are regularly tested for drug or alcohol use.
- Overloaded or Improperly Loaded Cargo – Overloaded or improperly loaded trucks can be difficult to maneuver. Unsecure cargo can also spill over onto public roadways and create hazards. Truck drivers and trucking companies have an obligation to ensure that vehicles are properly loaded so as to reduce the risk of preventable accidents.
- Defective Parts & Equipment – Defective auto parts and equipment are common causes of truck accidents. Defective brakes, bad tires, and even the most minor of defects can lead to devastating accidents.
- Improperly Trained drivers – Untrained drivers are simply more prone to making errors. With 80,000 pound vehicles, even small mistakes can have big consequences. Trucking companies have the responsibility to ensure that employees receive proper driving and safety training.
- Adverse Weather Conditions – Bad weather – including rain, snow, and strong winds – is a very common cause of truck accidents. Truck drivers should be properly trained to handle these conditions or to follow protocol for pulling off the roads when weather becomes too difficult to navigate.
Ultimately, truck drivers and trucking companies have the responsibility to take reasonable measures to address these common causes of accidents and reduce the risk of them occurring. If you or your loved one has recently been injured in an 18-wheeler accident, allow a Houston truck accident lawyer from The Daspit Law Firm to review your case.
Call (713) 364-0915 for a FREE consultation or fill out our online case evaluation form.