There are many reasons why large commercial trucks are involved in crashes with other vehicles. As studies, statistics and our own experience at Burch, George & Germany, P.C., show, preventable driver errors are among the leading causes.
We are committed to help victims of these types of truck accidents throughout all of Oklahoma’s 77 counties. To learn how we can help you, call or contact us online today.
Factors Contributing to Truck Crashes
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s “Large Truck Crash Causation Study” found that the top 10 factors in large truck crashes, in descending order, are
- Brake problems
- Traffic flow interruption (congestion, previous crash)
- Prescription drug use by driver
- Traveling too fast for conditions (speeding)
- Unfamiliarity with roadway
- Roadway problems (construction, maintenance, design)
- Required to stop before crash (traffic control device, crosswalk)
- Over-the-counter drug use by driver
- Inadequate surveillance (i.e., failure to look or to see)
- Fatigued driver
In addition to these factors, a cargo shift can cause a truck accident. If the materials or merchandise a truck is carrying is not properly secured, it can move suddenly. The transfer of weight in a cargo shift can cause the truck driver to lose control of his vehicle or tip the vehicle.
How Did the Truck Accident Occur? Was there a drunk truck driver involved?
While different types of truck accidents can be classified according to the contributing factor – drunk driving, for instance – the type of accident is most commonly described in terms of how the accident occurred. Examples include the following:
- Underride – This occurs when the car slides under the trailer upon impact. A 2013 report found that least some underride occurred in about 75 percent of rear-end crashes involving passenger vehicles colliding with large trucks. Almost three-quarters of light vehicle occupants in underride crashes studied for the report were fatally injured.
- Jackknife – A truck accident in which the cab and trailer of a truck get out of sync and move toward one another, like a folding pocketknife, is known as a “jackknife.” Slamming on the brakes or otherwise losing traction due to a sudden turn or cargo shift can lead to a tractor-trailer jackknife accident. While a jackknife is typically a single-vehicle accident, the loss of control and the sweeping movement of an out-of-control trailer can be dangerous to nearby vehicles, people and property.
- Rollover – A large truck’s high center of gravity increases its risk of rolling over, particularly on curves and on highway on- and off-ramps. A heavy truck involved in a rollover will damage anything in its path. Cargo shifts often are factors in rollovers.
- Cargo spills – Improperly loaded cargo that spills or becomes dislodged can cause a variety of damage. Heavy material can fall onto and smash cars, people and other property or cause serious environmental damage.
- Bridge strikes – These crashes are often caused by drivers not paying attention to road signs and/or not being aware of the routes they are taking.
- Head-on collisions – These accidents typically occur when a truck crosses the centerline. They almost always cause a serious injury or death.
- Rear-end collisions – These crashes are the primary cause of whiplash, a potentially serious and long-lasting injury to the neck and back.
- Sideswipes – When a large truck skids (slides) and yaws (the trailer or cab rotates from its normal position), makes an improper turn or changes lanes incorrectly, it can collide with a vehicle traveling next to it in a sideswipe accident.
Got involved in an Oklahoma truck accident and don’t have an idea about Oklahoma laws for truck accidents? Contact our truck accidents law firm Oklahoma today.
At Burch, George & Germany, P.C., we represent victims of serious truck accidents. Our goal is to help them obtain compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering and/or long-term medical or disability issues.
To speak with an experienced Oklahoma truck wreck lawyer and learn more about seeking the compensation you deserve after a collision with a large commercial truck, call us today or use our online form. Our our truck accidents law firm Oklahoma provides free case reviews. You may also contact us for truck-related hit and run accidents.
For More Information: