The Dangers of Commercial Truck Accidents
Why Commercial Trucks Are So Dangerous for Other Drivers on the Road
West Coast Trial Lawyers knows that it goes without saying that commercial trucks pose a real threat to all cars on the road. That is why there are so many truck crashes in California. They are slower and heavier than any car on the road, and they can easily cause serious property damage and horrific injuries.
Commercial trucks include the common semi-truck or 18-wheeler, but they include tanker trucks, dump trucks, and many types of delivery vehicles. The level of danger a commercial truck will pose to others is specific to the body type and the cargo being transported.
If you or a loved one were injured in a truck accident in Los Angeles, you may be entitled to financial compensation. The experienced team of Los Angeles truck accident lawyers at West Coast Trial Lawyers will recover all the compensation you are entitled to so that you can focus on your recovery and on the ones you care most about. Below, we will discuss the most common truck accident causes.
Truck Accident Facts
Commercial trucks are absolutely necessary for the wellbeing of the American economy. However, it is impossible to ignore the real hazards that they bring to our roadways. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are almost 450,000 truck accidents every year. While some are exhausted because they do not follow the 8-hour rule.
The data compiled by the NHTSA tells us that just over 5,000 drivers lost their lives in these accidents. Alarmingly, 74 percent of the individuals who died were mostly car drivers or passengers.
Commercial Trucks and Common Hazards
Commercial trucks, such as the common 18-wheeler are dangerous not only because of how large they are, but because of their enormous blind spots.
Dump trucks, on the other hand, are a hazard to drivers for different reasons. These are carrier vehicles that are used for construction materials, such as dirt, sand, and debris. It is very common for this material to fly out of a truck’s box and hit a vehicle. This may cause a driver to be temporarily blinded.
Delivery trucks are made to carry cargo in a large, open area behind the driver. These trucks are sometimes known as box trucks. They are known for being heavy and easy to tip over.
Truck Driver Negligence
Perhaps the greatest reason why commercial trucks are so dangerous is not the truck itself, but the actual driver. Due to the pressure and long hours they operate under, truck drivers are prone to driving negligently on the road.
There are many forms of truck driver negligence. A few common examples of truck driver negligence may include:
- Not obeying the posted speed limit
- Cutting curves sharply
- Not yielding the right-of-way
- Driving when already tired
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Not obeying traffic lights
- Negligent truck maintenance
- Dangerous lane changes
- Violating Federal Motor Carrier Regulations
Accidents happen. If you were injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Below is a brief explanation of damages. Damages are a type of monetary award that is determined by a court of law to help compensate an aggrieved individual for any losses or injuries sustained as a result of someone’s negligence.
Economic damages are intended to compensate a plaintiff for losses that a dollar amount can readily be attached to. Economic damages are calculated by determining the amount of out-of-pocket losses an aggrieved individual has or will expect to incur as a result of their injuries.
A few examples of economic losses include:
- Loss of Earning Capacity
- Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
Non-economic damages are essentially intended to cover losses that are thought of as subjective and will not necessarily cover out-of-pocket losses. Non-economic damages may include compensation for:
- Emotional Distress
- Pain and Suffering
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life
The third type of damages a California court may award are known as punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended as punishment and are only awarded when a defendant’s behavior is especially harmful. Punitive damages are relatively rare and in fact were only incorporated in 5 percent of all verdicts.
Furthermore, there is no real set standard for calculating and awarding punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded at the court’s discretion and will vary depending on the specific circumstances of a case.
Contact Us to Find Out How We Can Help
If you have sustained injuries in the city of Los Angeles as a result of a truck accident, a truck accident lawyer at our personal injury law firm can help you recover compensation for the losses you have suffered, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call West Coast Trial Lawyers today at (213) 927-3700 or email [email protected] to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring, and compassionate legal team.