Who Is to Blame? 5 Common Factors in Commercial Truck Accidents
Collisions involving large commercial trucks can have devastating consequences, and those who are injured deserve to receive just compensation for their injury-related losses. When seeking financial compensation for injuries from a truck accident, the first step is to determine what exactly went wrong. Once you know what went wrong, then you can identify the party (or parties) that are responsible. Once you know who was to blame, then you can take legal action to recover just compensation.
Determining the cause (or causes) of a truck accident requires a thorough investigation, and this investigation should be conducted as soon as possible to prevent the loss of critical evidence. Some of the most common factors in commercial truck accidents include the following:
1. Truck Driver Negligence
Truck driver negligence is a leading cause of serious and fatal trucking collisions. Unfortunately, despite the extreme risks of driving an 18-wheeler or tractor-trailer unsafely, many truck drivers choose to put other motorists in harm’s way. Common examples of truck driver negligence include:
- Driving while distracted
- Driving while drowsy or fatigued
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Merging and changing lanes without looking
- Speeding, tailgating and other forms of aggressive driving
2. Trucking Company Negligence
In many cases, trucking companies will be legally responsible for commercial truck accidents as well. Trucking companies can often be held liable for their drivers’ mistakes (under the law of “vicarious liability”), and they can also be held liable for their own negligence. Some common examples of trucking company negligence include:
- Hiring inexperienced and unlicensed drivers
- Forcing drivers to spend too many hours behind the wheel
- Overloading trucks
- Improperly loading truck cargo
- Failing to properly maintain their trucks
3. Repair or Maintenance Shop Negligence
When a maintenance issue causes an accident, it is also possible that a repair or maintenance shop that worked on the truck could be legally responsible. Faulty brake jobs, negligent transmission repairs, and even improper tire inflation can cause dangerous highway collisions.
4. Negligent Road Construction or Maintenance
Dangerous conditions on the road can also cause serious and fatal trucking accidents. Potholes, ice and snow accumulation, low shoulders, inadequate safety barriers, and construction debris in the roadway are just some of the issues that can lead to unavoidable accidents.
5. Negligent Passenger Vehicle Drivers
In many cases, accidents involving commercial trucks will result from other drivers’ negligence. If a car, pickup truck or SUV vehicle driver put the truck driver in a situation where he or she was unable to avoid a collision, the passenger vehicle driver’s insurance company may be liable for your accident-related losses.
Speak with a Denver Truck Accident Lawyer for Free
Were you injured in a truck accident in the Denver area? If so, we encourage you to contact us promptly for a free initial consultation. Our attorneys have decades of experience and have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for truck accident victims’ losses. To speak with an attorney about your rights, please call 303-333-8000 or tell us about your accident online now.