Semi-truck accidents, also known as 18-wheeler accidents, big rig accidents, or truck accidents, can be catastrophic and life-altering events. When such massive vehicles collide with smaller passenger cars, the results are often devastating. It’s important to know the dangers of semi-truck accidents and why it’s crucial to seek legal help if you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident.
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Factors Making Truck Accidents More Dangerous
Semi-truck accidents are more fatal compared to typical car accidents for several key reasons:
Size and Weight Disparity: Semi-trucks, also known as 18-wheelers or tractor-trailers, are significantly larger and heavier than passenger vehicles. A fully loaded semi-truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, while the average passenger car weighs around 4,000 pounds. When a massive vehicle collides with a smaller one, the force of impact is much greater, leading to more severe damage and injuries.
Higher Impact Force: Due to their weight and size, trucks have a higher kinetic energy when in motion. In a collision, this higher energy is transferred to the smaller vehicle, causing extensive damage and often resulting in more severe injuries to its occupants.
Stopping Distance: Semi-trucks require a much longer distance to come to a complete stop compared to passenger cars. This means that if a semi-truck driver needs to brake suddenly, they may not be able to stop in time to avoid a collision with the vehicle in front of them, leading to rear-end collisions that can be particularly devastating.
Blind Spots: Tractor-trailers have large blind spots or “no-zones” around them where the truck driver cannot see other vehicles. This increases the risk of collisions when smaller vehicles are in these blind spots and the truck changes lanes or makes a turn.
Cargo Load: Trucks often carry heavy cargo, which can become hazardous in the event of an accident. Improperly secured cargo can shift during a collision, leading to a loss of control and further increasing the danger.
Driver Fatigue: Long hours on the road can lead to driver fatigue in truck drivers. Fatigue can impair a driver’s reaction time and decision-making abilities, making them more likely to be involved in accidents.
Complexity of Maneuvering: Semi-trucks are less maneuverable than passenger vehicles. They have a larger turning radius and require more space to make lane changes or negotiate curves. This can lead to accidents when truck drivers have difficulty navigating tight spots or making evasive maneuvers.
Inadequate Maintenance: Poorly maintained trucks are more likely to experience mechanical failures on the road, such as brake failures or tire blowouts. These mechanical issues can lead to more severe accidents.
Speed and Stopping Time: Semi-trucks often travel at higher speeds on highways, and their greater momentum makes it difficult to stop quickly. This can lead to high-speed collisions, which tend to result in more severe injuries.
Cargo Hazard: Some cargo carried by tractor-trailer trucks may be hazardous or flammable materials. In the event of an accident, these materials can pose an additional threat to both the occupants of the involved vehicles and first responders.
George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers Can Help You
Due to these factors, semi-truck accidents are more likely to result in severe injuries and fatalities, highlighting the importance of safety measures, regulations, and legal representation for victims of such accidents. Truck accidents change lives in an instant. At George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers, we are committed to helping accident victims seek the compensation they deserve. Our experienced truck accident attorneys can navigate the complexities of semi-truck accident cases, allowing you to focus on your recovery. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us for a free consultation and let us help you on the road to justice and recovery. Your well-being is our priority.
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