Getting In An Accident With A Commercial Truck: What To Expect

Posted on

While getting in any accident is not an ideal situation to be in, if your destiny for the day is to get in an automobile accident the last type of vehicle you want to collide with is a commercial truck. A fully loaded commercial truck (such as a trash truck or a semi transporting goods to a store) can weigh as much as 25 times what a traditional automobile weighs. When a truck weighing so much more than a vehicle collides with it, it is not uncommon for both serious and fatal injuries to be the result. If you or someone you care about has been in an accident with a commercial truck, it can be beneficial to know what to expect.

Tracy Morgan's Accident with a Wal-Mart Commercial Truck

In order to better understand what to expect after an accident with a commercial truck, it is beneficial to look at an example of a commercial truck accident that resulted in a personal injury case. Tracy Morgan, a 45 year old comedian, was in a devastating accident with a Wal-Mart truck that led to several serious injuries.

It was later determined that the driver of the truck was going at least 20 miles faster than the speed limit. Tracy Morgan filed a lawsuit against the company for negligence because it was revealed that the driver was going so fast because he had been awake for 24 hours and fell asleep at the wheel. Negligence and a sleep deprived driver is one of the more common causes of a commercial truck accident.

Other Causes of Commercial Truck Accidents

Whether or not you have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit after an accident with a commercial truck depends on who was at fault for the accident. Namely, was the accident your fault or the truck driver's? If the accident was the truck driver's fault, you would be able to sue the employer of the truck driver (or the driver if the driver is self-employed).

Examples of the Car Driver Causing The Accident:

  • Driving in the truck's "no drive zone" – There are areas right beside and right behind commercial trucks where the driver has no visibility. When you drive in these zones, you put yourself at risk.
  • Abruptly changing lanes to get in front of a truck – A commercial truck cannot slam on their brakes the same way a traditional vehicle can.

Examples of the Truck Driver Causing The Accident:

  • Inadequate training – The truck driver was never taught proper driving techniques, safety precautions, or defensive driving.
  • Bad Motivation – The truck driver's employer encourages the driver to driver faster and sleep less in order to get the job done quickly by compensation/monetary bonuses.
  • Unrealistic expectations – The hours the truck driver works prevents the driver from getting enough sleep.

The most important thing to do after an accident with a commercial truck is to call law enforcements and make sure anyone injured seeks medical attention immediately. The law enforcements and any witnesses to the accident should then determine whether the car driver or the truck driver was at fault. If it is determined that the truck driver was at fault, you should move forward with talking to an auto accident lawyer (like those at the John Tamming Law Office) about a personal injury claim.