Common But Deadly Types of Truck Accidents
If you’ve ever driven beside a semi-truck, you already know the severe discrepancy in weight and size between trucks and passenger vehicles.
Commercial trucks are large, imposing vehicles that can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Their size often leads to devastating crashes and severe injuries for those involved.
Often, post-collision investigations reveal that commercial truck crashes are caused by the negligent actions of a truck driver or trucking company.
Here, we want to review the most common types of truck accidents drivers encounter on the roadways of Illinois. If you or a loved one were hit by a commercial truck, call a Chicago truck accident attorney today.
Jackknifing accidents occur when a semi-truck essentially folds in on itself so that the cab forms a 90-degree angle with the trailer.
These collisions are often the result of a truck driver braking too hard and too quickly, causing the weight of the trailer to shift, bringing it forward against the traction of the cab portion of the truck.
Commercial truck tires are placed under an incredible amount of stress, and a blowout can lead to a driver losing control of the truck. Unfortunately, this happens often – tire defects, which often cause blowouts account for 30% of all truck-related accidents.
A tire blowout can pose a significant danger to nearby vehicles, especially if the truck driver panics and swerves into another lane of traffic.
The blown-out tire itself can also lead to severe accidents on the roadway, with dozens of cars swerving to avoid the obstacle.
Wide Turn Accidents
Large commercial truck drivers often swing the vehicle to the left before making a right turn so that they can complete the turn properly. When a driver swings the truck to the left, this can pose a risk to those in the driver’s blind spots or those approaching the truck from the rear.
Drivers can also trap vehicles or pedestrians on their right side as they are making a turn.
Truck Rollover Accidents
If a driver loses control of their commercial truck, the vehicle could roll over onto its side and onto unsuspecting motorists or pedestrians.
As you can imagine, these accidents are extremely deadly for occupants in both commercial trucks and passenger vehicles. In 2019, 47% of truck driver deaths occurred in rollover accidents, compared to 39% of SUV passenger deaths and 20% of car passenger deaths.
Commercial trucks have blind spots on all four sides of their vehicles, and they are aptly named “No Zones.” When a driver cannot see other vehicles while they are changing lanes, it puts others around them in danger of being hit, forced off the road, or crushed.
Due to the weight of large commercial trucks, they often cannot slow down quickly enough to avoid rear-ending vehicles in front of them. These accidents can cause catastrophic injuries and significant property damage.
An underride accident is when a tractor-trailer stops quickly. Other vehicles approaching can slam into the rear of the truck, causing them to become lodged under the trailer.
Additionally, vehicles could get lodged under the sides of a tractor-trailer during a lane change or a T-bone accident. These underride accidents often shear off the top of a passenger vehicle, which can cause catastrophic injuries and fatalities.
Load or Cargo Accidents
It is critical that commercial truck drivers and trucking companies properly secure and load cargo on their vehicles. Failing to do so could result in the vehicle’s weight being displaced, leading to an accident on the roadway.
Additionally, unsecured cargo could fall off and strike others on the roadway.
T-bone collisions can occur anytime a truck driver runs a red light and strikes another vehicle’s side. Again, the weight of a commercial truck can lead to catastrophic damage if they T-bone another vehicle.
Common Injuries in Semi-Truck Accidents
Truck accidents cause severe injuries. Truck crashes can even become mass casualty incidents. It is not uncommon to see victims suffering from the following in the aftermath of a truck crash:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Bone fractures
- Loss of or damage to a bodily organ
- Dismemberment or amputation
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Significant disfigurement
- Other injuries that inhibit a person’s daily activities
Each of these injuries requires victims to seek immediate medical attention. In many cases, victims face long roads to recovery that include surgery, rehabilitation, and physical therapy.
Different parties could be liable for the crash. Sometimes, it is due to the negligence of the truck driver (driving impaired, carrying too much weight, etc.) and sometimes due to the actions of a truck company (failing to maintain the vehicle).
If you or a loved one were injured in a truck collision due to negligence, the Chicago truck accident lawyers at Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates can help. Contact us at (800) 985-1819 today to schedule your free consultation.