Due to the nature of our economy, commercial trucks are seemingly always on our roadways. Semi-trailer trucks are large, complicated pieces of machinery, and even when truck drivers practice safe driving habits, what may seem like small errors or minor problems can have deadly results. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 4,136 Americans died in large truck accidents in 2018. If you or a loved one have been injured in a commercial trucking accident, you will want to work with a skilled attorney to determine whether negligence played a role in this incident and pursue financial compensation from those who were responsible.
Truck Driver and Trucking Company Negligence
Tractor-trailer trucks can weigh up to 20-30 times more than standard automobiles, and because of this size difference, the injuries suffered by people involved in collisions between these vehicles can be devastating. In many cases, occupants of passenger vehicles suffer serious or fatal injuries, while truck drivers experience minimal injuries. According to the Department of Transportation, truck drivers accounted for only 4% of all commercial trucking fatalities in 2018.
Many truck accidents occur due to truck driver negligence. Drowsy driving is one of the most common and dangerous forms of negligence. Truck drivers must comply with strict requirements regarding the number of hours they can drive, and these regulations are meant to prevent driver fatigue and ensure that drivers can operate their vehicles safely. Unfortunately, many truck drivers falsify their driving logs in order to work longer hours, and in some cases, trucking companies encourage drivers to bend or break the rules in order to deliver shipments more quickly and increase profits.
Speeding is another dangerous form of negligence that can result in serious accidents. Because commercial trucks can take up to 40% longer than other vehicles to come to a complete stop, truck drivers can put others at risk when they drive over the speed limit. Other dangerous truck driver behaviors include cell phone use and other forms of distracted driving. Anything that causes a driver to take their attention away from the road can result in deadly collisions.
Negligence by trucking companies can also be a major factor that leads to truck accidents. A company may fail to properly maintain their vehicles, leading to equipment failure that causes a driver to lose control of a truck. Companies may also overload trucks to carry more cargo, or cargo may not be secured properly. This can affect a driver’s ability to brake and steer properly, or cargo may fall from a truck, causing serious damage to vehicles and injuries to drivers and passengers.
Contact an Appleton Truck Accident Lawyer
At Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd., we understand how devastating a commercial truck accident can be. We will work with you to gather evidence demonstrating that a collision was caused by truck driver or trucking company negligence, and we will fight to ensure that you are properly compensated for your damages. To schedule a free consultation with a Green Bay, WI personal injury attorney, call us today at 920-739-7366.