All road accidents have the potential to be serious – no matter what vehicles are involved – but those involving 18-wheeler trucks are particularly catastrophic. Because of the sheer weight and size of these large vehicles, even minor collisions can cause severe property damage and physical injuries.
18-wheeler accidents are far more common than most people assume. According to Louisiana State University’s Data Reports, there were 97 fatal large-truck and bus accidents in 2014 – and many more that caused serious injuries to other road users. Several factors may lead to an 18-wheeler crash, but driver fatigue is one of the most common.
If you were injured by a negligent truck driver, call Morris Bart, LLC. With an expansive team of attorneys and support staff, our firm is equipped to handle your settlement negotiations and to litigate your case if it goes to court. To schedule an appointment with a Lafayette personal-injury lawyer, call us today at 1-888-996-7971.
The Role of Driver Fatigue in Truck Crashes
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, fatigued driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving. Despite regulations that were designed to prevent accidents related to driver fatigue, it is an ongoing concern for law enforcement and road users across the country.
Long working hours and a desire for more pay motivate commercial drivers to skip rest and complete their runs quickly. Unfortunately, driving long distances without rest causes lower concentration levels, and the operator is more likely to make basic mistakes that can cause serious accidents.
Common Errors That Fatigued Drivers Make
The most devastating accidents involving commercial trucks happen when the driver falls asleep. In most cases, though, the crash happens due to the driver’s delayed reaction time.
Fatigued drivers may not notice traffic lights and stop signs. They may also forget to turn off their turn signals, which can confuse other road users. Often, fatigued drivers forget to check their blind spots and either side-swipe another vehicle or back into one. All of these can have a severe impact on smaller, more vulnerable cars and pedestrians.
Even the safest drivers must be aware of the potential hazards associated with trucks – particularly during early mornings and late at night. It is important to avoid driving in their blind spots and to be particularly attentive around large, 18-wheeler trucks when on the road.
If you are injured in an accident with a fatigued truck driver, then you may be eligible for compensation from several parties. In addition to the at-fault driver, the driver’s employer and the party responsible for the truck’s maintenance may be liable for damages.
At Morris Bart, LLC, we can assess your case to identify all potential avenues for compensation. We can also help you avoid mistakes that could compromise your interests. To find out if you may have a legitimate claim, call us today at 800-537-8185 to schedule an appointment with a Lafayette personal-injury attorney.