Accidents involving large commercial trucks are not only exceptionally dangerous but are also complicated. Commercial trucks tend to dominate the highways. The easiest way to confirm this is to drive on an interstate highway during off-peak hours, say, from 12:00 midnight to 6:00 a.m., and you’ll see that a large majority of the vehicles on the road are large commercial trucks.
Category: Truck Accidents
With the loss of an hour due to daylight savings time, this week we can expect an increase in everything from car accidents to heart attacks. According to a 2014 study by the University of Colorado, auto accidents increase, due to the fact that it takes about 6-7 days to adjust to the darker morning commutes, coupled with the fact that the loss of an hour of sleep causes drivers to be less alert. According to the study, there is a 6.3% increase in traffic fatalities in over the six days following the March time change.
As personal injury attorneys, this most recent snow storm, reminds us again of the dangers of snow and ice flying off the back of moving vehicles. The dash-cam video below shows how this dangerous this driving hazard can be.
Let Our Easton Accident Attorney Help If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, then Pennsylvania law may entitle you to sue and recover damages as compensation — but who, exactly, are you entitled to sue? It may seem obvious to sue the driver, but there are potentially other defendants who are contributed to the accident and are therefore responsible for your injuries. Suing multiple defendants is an excellent strategy for when a single defendant might not have the financial wherewithal (or insurance coverage) necessary to pay out your damages in full. In those circumstances, it’s important to explore other defendants who have the resources necessary to cover your losses. Let’s take a closer look. The Truck Driver If the truck driver was negligent, reckless, or even intentionally caused the accident, then you may sue them directly. Truck drivers may have personal insurance coverage that can cover their losses, but it’s worth noting that truck accidents tend to be more severe than other motor vehicle accidents — as such, your damages may be significant, and may not be properly covered by a cheap insurance policy. The Trucking Company If the truck driver was employed and was acting within the course and scope of their employment, at the time of the accident, then you may have a right of action against their employer — the trucking company. You need not prove that the trucking company was negligent to impose liability. This is known as the doctrine of vicarious liability — an […]
The “hours of service” regulations for semi-truck drivers in Bethlehem and elsewhere, established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), are designed to keep fatigued drivers off the public roadways. These regulations place limits on when and how long these drivers can drive, helping to ensure that they stay awake and alert while driving and to help reduce the possibility of driver fatigue. If you’ve been injured in a crash involving a truck driver who may have been on the road too long, contact our Bethlehem truck accident attorney today. The Basic Hours of Service Rules The hours of service regulations for property-carrying drivers (the rules for passenger-carrying drivers are somewhat different) can be summarized as follows: 11-Hour Driving Limit: A driver may drive a maximum of 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty. 14-Hour Limit: A driver may not drive beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming on duty, following 10 consecutive hours off duty. Off-duty time does not extend the 14-hour period. Rest Breaks: A driver may drive only if eight hours or less have passed since the end of the driver’s last off-duty or sleeper-berth period of at least 30 minutes. 60-70 Hour Limit: A driver may not drive after 60-70 hours on duty in 7-8 consecutive days. A driver may restart a 7-8 consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty. Who Must Comply With the Hours of Service Rules? The hours of service regulations, or rules, only apply to […]
Whether it occurs in Easton or elsewhere in the state, the answer is yes, it can. You’d think that a vehicle with 18 wheels would be able to maintain contact with a road surface, especially when fully-loaded, yet hydroplaning is a very real danger, even for semi-trucks. According to Miriam-Webster, the definition of hydroplaning is “to skid on a wet surface (such as pavement) because a film of water on the surface causes the tires to lose contact with it.” In other words, hydroplaning occurs when a vehicle, even a vehicle as large as a semi-truck, is traveling on a thin layer of water instead of the actual road surface. Even a fractional amount of water, or “film,” underneath the tires can cause a vehicle to slide out of control. The danger is perhaps even greater for those vehicles around a hydroplaning truck, as they are typically smaller vehicles and may have trouble avoiding such a large truck that is out of control. If you’ve been involved in an accident, let our Easton truck accident attorney help. Three main factors contribute to hydroplaning: Water depth, Tire tread depth, and Vehicle speed. Despite the fact that water depth is one of these factors, hydroplaning is most common during the initial stages of a rainstorm, when the accumulating water mixes with the oil that has spilled onto the roadway during dry weather. As the rain continues to wash away this oil, the roadways become more reliable. How to Reduce or Eliminate Hydroplaning […]
To “jackknife” a vehicle means to fold a multi-sectional vehicle, such as a semi-truck with a trailer, so that it resembles the angle of a folding pocket knife. When a vehicle towing a trailer begins to skid, the trailer can push the truck from behind until it turns around and faces backward. Vehicle jackknifing in Stroudsburg and elsewhere throughout the state may be caused by equipment failures, such as defective brakes, improper braking technique, or dangerous road conditions like icy or wet road surfaces. Under certain circumstances, a semi-truck driver may attempt to deliberately jackknife a vehicle in order to halt it following a brake failure. When a multi-sectional vehicle jackknifes, the cab is facing in the opposite direction of the trailer, making it impossible for the driver to move the truck and therefore the truck becomes stuck. Jackknife accidents can cause significant congestion and vehicle backups on roadways since a jackknifed truck is almost always facing sideways across the lanes of a road and can no longer move. If you’ve been involved in a crash, let our Stroudsburg personal injury lawyer help. Who Is at Fault in a Semi-truck Jackknife Accident? Semi-truck jackknife accidents can be caused by a wide variety of factors, including: Insufficient driver training. Driver failure to apply brakes correctly. Other types of driver error. Driver fatigue. Distracted or impaired driving. Defective equipment or equipment failure, particularly brake failure. Wet, frozen, and/or slippery road surfaces or other dangerous road conditions. Poor weather or other adverse driving […]
Semi-trucks accidents can be severe, and train accidents can be equally catastrophic. When a train collides with a semi-truck, the results can be absolutely devastating. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were 56,000 injury crashes involving truck combinations and 79,000 persons injured in combination truck crashes in 2017. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTA), there were 1,848 accidents involving trains, with 57 people injured in 2019. Semi-trucks and trains in Doylestown and throughout the state are both large and powerful modes of transporting freight, and the enormous damage caused by accidents involving them should not come as a surprise. Also unsurprising is the fact that accidents between them typically occur at railroad crossings, usually when a semi-truck fails to move past the crossing in time. If you’ve been hurt in an accident involving a truck or a train, speak to a Doylestown accident lawyer today. Trains often carry passengers as well as freight. In Pennsylvania, public transportation, including train transportation, is administered by the Pennsylvania Public Transportation Association (PPTA), in affiliation with groups such as the Pennsylvania Transportation Resource and Information Network (PennTRAIN). The PPTA was created to advocate for public transportation in Pennsylvania and to support its members in achieving their defined missions. Who Is at Fault? Our Doylestown Accident Lawyer Explains Typically, as is the case with most accidents in Doylestown and elsewhere, truck drivers and train conductors blame each other for accidents between semi-trucks and trains. On one hand, semi-trucks are […]
Truck accidents typically involve a motor vehicle crash with a “big rig,” semi-truck, tractor-trailer or some other commercial vehicle. There are many differences between truck accidents and car accidents. For instance, there are a lot more car accidents than truck accidents. More than 7.2 million car accidents occur in the U.S. every year, but less than 300,000 truck accidents occur yearly. To put that into perspective, that means hundreds of truck accidents take place every day in the U.S. While truck accidents occur less often than car accidents every year, they pack a larger punch. Commercial truck accidents account for 287,000 insurance property damage claims and result in more than 77,000 personal injuries and 4,300 deaths in the U.S. each year. This is probably because trucks are much bigger than cars and thus, make a bigger impact. While the average car weighs between 3,000 and 5,000 pounds, a tractor-trailer can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Since trucks are so much larger and heavier than cars, truck accidents are much more likely to result in catastrophic injuries and death. If you have been involved in a truck accident, contact our Doylestown accident lawyer today to discuss your legal rights and options. Another factor that may contribute to the deadliness of truck accidents is that trucks are allowed to carry flammable and hazardous materials – a condition that would certainly make a potential collision more dangerous. Moreover, if cargo isn’t properly secured in a truck, it could break loose in traffic and […]
In Pennsylvania and throughout the country, rollover accidents are a serious problem that are particularly common in cases involving large trucks. According to data gathered and reported on by the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine, nine percent of all large truck accidents involve rollovers. Rollover accidents can be avoided with the exercise of reasonable care. Drivers and others who fail to exercise reasonable care thus risk exposing others to the dangers of a rollover accident. If you have sustained injuries in a truck rollover accident, it’s likely that you are entitled to damages as compensation for your losses. How Improper Loading Can Cause a Rollover Accident Though rollover accidents have many causes (inadequate maintenance, suspension tuning issues, tire deterioration, and more), one of the chief negligence-related causes is improper cargo loading. When the cargo load has not been properly secured, or has been unevenly distributed, then that can result in weight and balance problems that are difficult — if not impossible — for the driver to correct during maneuvers. For example, if a commercial delivery truck has been loaded with cargo that is not properly secured, then the cargo may come loose and slide to one side of the truck during a particularly sharp corner turn, thus causing the truck to overturn. Different Parties May Be Negligent Rollover motor vehicle accidents (that were caused by improper cargo loading) may expose multiple different parties to liability, depending on the circumstances. For example, though it may initially seem as though […]