Trucks: Indispensable Threats on the Road?
Sharing the road with really huge vehicles, specifically, trucks or 18-wheelers, is one experience that drivers of smaller vehicles will never be able to do away with. For, though, trucks are considered threats on the road due to their size and weight, so that even the least error from their driver can cause major damage to properties and/or severe in jury to other drivers, motorcyclists or pedestrians, their important contribution to the nation’s economy make these vehicles indispensable.
Trucks are usually 70 feet long, weigh about 80,000 lbs. or 40 tons, and have a stance that is designed much higher than cars. These qualities, which make truck drivers safer and more secure (than cars) during accidents, however, are the very same qualities that make these vehicles much more challenging to operate and handle. First, due to their size and weight, maneuvering becomes more difficult, capability to avoid collisions is reduced, and, to come to a full stop, longer stopping distance is required plus tires that will provide great traction and a breaking system that will effectively enable deceleration. Second, though a truck’s higher stance gives drivers a commanding and greater view of the road ahead, it, nevertheless, lessens their view of what’s behind and at the sides, especially the right side, of their vehicle (these areas are known as the “no zone” areas or “truckers’ blind spots” where drivers either have limited or no visibility at all). Worse, this higher design could only mean a higher center of gravity – the major cause of rollover accidents.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) records about 500,000 truck accidents every year; about 4,000 of these are fatal. According to a group of researchers, who studied causes of truck crashes, the most common factors that led to an accident included: poor truck driver performance; driver fatigue; mechanical failure or truck parts that fail to function properly; lack of familiarity with roadway; intoxication due to alcohol, illegal drug, or prescription or over-the-counter drugs; failure of trucking companies to properly screen applicant truck drivers; wrong distribution of cargo weight; and, failure of trucking firms to properly train their drivers.
A person’s failure to perform what is part of his/her duty is considered negligence. Now, while some accidents are results of things or events that man cannot control, many more are due to someone’s failure to act diligently, thus, rendering so many road accidents as should-have-been prevented misfortunes.
A Louisville personal injury attorney could be aware of the possible serious consequences of a truck accident on a victim’s life. While some injuries may cause a victim to be bedridden for a number of days or weeks, other injuries are too severe, resulting to a disability or a condition that will alter his/her (and his/her family’s) way of life for a long, long time.
In any type of accident, even a simple, yet also harmful, slip and fall, it is often necessary to seek legal assistance for the possible legal actions a victim may decide to pursue, as well as for the compensation that he/she may be entitled to receive.