Common Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents
According to the United States Department of Transportation, a semi-truck accident occurs in the United States every 16 minutes. A full 75% of these accidents involve a passenger vehicle, often causing great harm to the other drivers. An Atlanta truck accident lawyer can answer any questions that you may have about the semi-truck laws in Atlanta.Common Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents
- Driver Fatigue: Driver fatigue is one of the largest causes of semi-truck accidents in Atlanta, Georgia. When a driver is fatigued, then his or her work can be seriously affected. Fatigued drivers havie higher rates of crashes and lower response times, in addition to the medical problems that surface with chronic fatigue. Federal regulations currently limit truck drivers from working more than 70 hours per week. Unfortunately, not all semi-truck drivers (or their employers) follow this regulation. For the semi-truck drivers and the truck company that flouts this regulation and causes a semi-truck accident, there may be a recourse sought by the victim with the help of a truck accident attorney in Atlanta.
- Improper Maintenance: An improperly maintained semi-truck is very dangerous. Because semi-trucks usually weigh 20 to 30 times more than the average passenger vehicle, such as a car or SUV, a semi-truck not only requires more maintenance but is also more lethal when that maintenance is improperly deferred or neglected. Common accidents caused by the improper maintenance of a semi-truck include tire blowouts, a semitruck losing its load, or a jackknife where a semitruck’s brakes fail and the trailer moves from behind the semi-truck to another location.
- Distracted Driving: Similar to a car accident or a pedestrian accident, a distracted driver is dangerous, no matter what vehicle he or she is driving. The potential distractions for a driver are unlimited, however, and some of the most common include using a cell phone while driving (either texting or calling), changing the radio station, or inputting an address into a navigation system.
- Impaired Driving: While the driver of a semi-truck should not get behind the wheel after drinking, there are other substances that can impair driving. For example, a prescription drug taken as prescribed can impair a person’s ability to drive in certain circumstances.
- Improper or Inadequate Training: Companies are required to make sure that their semi-truck drivers are competent and well-trained. A semi-truck driver who has a history of accidents or collisions with passenger vehicles may not have been trained well by his or her company. In this instance, it may be possible to recover your damages from the company that negligently contracted or hired the semi-truck driver.
If you are the victim of a semi-truck accident, then the issues of liability and damages are much more complex than in typical car accidents. In general, the driver of a semi-truck is held to a higher standard of driving, as well as being subjected to more regulations and rules by the federal government. To learn more about how the laws on semi-truck accidents applicable to the Atlanta metropolitan area may affect you, contact an Atlanta truck accident lawyer today.