In the U.S., semi-truck accidents are all too common. These accidents often result in truck accident lawsuits, serious injuries, and death. State and federal law enforcement and safety agencies continually promote and regulate safe driving and equipment maintenance practices for the nation’s large over-the-road trucking industry.
In 2006, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) did a major study of semi-truck accidents that resulted in some interesting findings:
- Fatalities are more likely to happen when a truck accident involves at least three vehicles.
- Three-quarters (3/4) of truck accidents happen during the daytime and two-thirds (2/3) on level pavement.
- Factors in significant numbers in tractor-trailer crashes include driving too fast for the conditions, running off the road to the right and when other vehicles move into trucks’ lanes.
When a St. Louis, MO CBS local news station interviewed Missouri Highway Patrol Captain Tim Hull regarding semi-truck fatality trends in the state, he explained that usually in semi-truck accidents the drivers of the smaller vehicles involved are responsible because they maneuver into truckers’ blind spots, positions where the trucker cannot see the other vehicles.
There are four critical crash categories:
- Lane Change Crashes,
- Loss of Control Crashes,
- Rear End Crashes, and
- Run Under Crashes.
Preventing critical crashes requires drivers to recognize the hazards that increase the odds of a crash. Anything from frequent or abrupt lane changes, failing to use turn signals, losing traction due to wet or dry surfaces, driving distracted, fatigue, speed, lack of experience, following too closely, insufficient tire tread depth to poor judgement.
Unfortunately, accidents involving tractor trailers and passenger vehicles will only continue to happen in the state, as Missouri is a ‘bridge state’, meaning that because of Missouri’s location in the center of the country, many major routes crisscross through on their way to freight destinations in all directions.
After an accident with a semi-truck or tractor trailer, in injury victims may be left with serious injuries and financial damages. If the truck driver or trucking company was negligent in causing the accident, the victims can seek damages by filing a lawsuit for pain and suffering.
Following an accident with an 18-wheeler, you should immediately call 911 and request an ambulance respond to the scene so you can determine the extent of your injuries (if any). Be sure to get the driver’s and his employer’s or trucking companies’ information. Get a copy of the driver’s license, registration, and insurance.
If you are injured in a Missouri truck accident, or if a loved one has been killed, discuss the circumstances of your case with an experienced Missouri personal injury attorney. KNOW WHAT TO DO, Call Tad! 417-865-4400