Accidents involving trucks, particularly commercial trucks often lead to serious injury, life threatening injury, and deadly outcomes due to the sheer size of these trucks. Speed may also play a role in the severity of injuries, but the size of these trucks alone is enough to cause injury or death.
Many people fear riding along side of big rigs when traveling on the highway or an interstate, because of their size and because some of us have actually witnessed a big rig make a “bad move” on a highway or interstate. Maybe you witnessed a truck approach a smaller vehicle or another big rig from behind a little too close for comfort.
Or maybe you witnessed a truck attempt to pass another vehicle, causing them to almost clipping another vehicle because they didn’t see that vehicle in their mirror. And maybe you’ve had a large truck behind you in traffic that almost hit your vehicle from behind when you had to stop for a red light or stop sign because they weren’t paying attention.
Any vehicle regardless of the vehicles size is a weapon when operated negligently. Trucks are heavy pieces of machinery that require extreme care and professionalism when in operation. Not operating a truck with extreme caution to safety and professionalism leads to avoidable accidents.
What Are The Common Causes Of Trucking Accidents?
According to the 2007 Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration report, the most common causes of commercial trucking accidents involve the use of illicit drugs, prescription drugs, speeding, and drivers driving in unfamiliar territory. In fact, 26% of crashes were due to drug use, 23% were due to speed, and 22% were due to drivers in unfamiliar territory.
Other common causes included in the report include: blind spots, driver fatigue, distractions, failure to signal, difficulty maneuvering, and road rage. Luckily, road rage only accounted for 7% of trucking accidents. This report included a deeper probe into accidents involving 1,127 commercial trucks, as well as 959 other vehicle types.
Out of those accidents, there were 251 deaths and 1,408 injuries. Furthermore, the chances of a crash involving an 80,000 pound commercial truck resulting in death increases with speed.
Case in Point – The Recent Trucking Accident with Tracy Morgan
You may have heard the recent story in the news involving the popular comedian Tracy Morgan who was involved in a deadly accident with a large commercial truck on the interstate in New Jersey. Mr. Morgan had just finished a stand-up act in Delaware and was on his way back to New York City with fellow comedians on board of his luxury van when a tractor-trailer slammed into their vehicle from behind at 1 a.m.
This then created a chain reaction involving four other vehicles on the interstate, resulting in the on the scene death of Mr. Morgan’s good friend and fellow comedian, James McNair. Mr. Morgan, two other comedians and his assistant were all seriously injured and flown to a nearby hospital via helicopter where Mr. Morgan and the two other comedians were pronounced to be in critical condition.
Mr. Morgan and the others continue to recover from their injuries but two of the comedians including Mr. Morgan are now in fair condition. One remains in critical condition. During the accident, Mr. Morgan suffered broken ribs, a broken leg, and other serious injuries. Full recovery will take some time, including the recovery of the loss of a dear friend.
There is the potential for trauma symptoms as a direct result of this accident as well as long-term health problems. Upon investigation, it was determined that the cause of the accident was due to the truck driver had not slept for a full 24-hours while operating the truck.
Truck Accidents and Workers Compensation Claims
While the Tracy Morgan truck accident is likely not to result in a Workers’ Compensation claim there are many scenarios where a truck accident could result in a claim. Our Workers Comp lawyers have regularly assisted truck drivers with claims for injuries from maintaining their trucks and making deliveries. If you or a loved one suffered an injury while working in the haulage industry, and you think you may have a claim, call us today for a free consultation and we can give you some guidance as to whether your claim is viable.