Have You Been Injured? We're Ready to Fight for You.

Common Causes of Trucking Accidents

Published on Feb 5, 2014 at 7:34 am in Trucking Accident.

common truck accident causesIf you’ve been involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer, or you’re a frequent interstate traveler and want to be more educated about possible dangers, you should know that the two most common causes of fatal accidents involving big-rigs are driver error and equipment problems.

  • Driver Error – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) conducted a study with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and found that “action or inaction by driver of either the truck or the other vehicle was the critical reason for 88 percent of crashes.”

This study provided unprecedented facts about information before the crash, which gives a fuller picture of all of the factors. By far, the two most common causes of driver error are driver fatigue and sleep deprivation.

Other factors that contribute to driver error include speeding, the use of prescription and over-the-counter drugs, fatigue, distractions, inattention, work environment, and being unfamiliar with the road.

  • Equipment Problems – Equipment problems are the second most common cause of fatalities involving trucks. Most of these accidents are caused by not maintaining the equipment properly. Accidents can also stem from design or manufacturing errors in the equipment itself (such as faulty tires or faulty back-up warning systems).

Additional causes of fatal crashes involving trucks are weather conditions, road design, and traffic signal failures. Federal regulations require tractor-trailer drivers to slow down when roads are wet or covered with snow.

If you’ve been involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer, it is vital that you gather all information you can about the driver and the vehicle. In many cases, law enforcement will inspect a tractor-trailer after the accident to determine whether or not the equipment is in violation of any federal regulations, such as those that require brakes to be in good working order. You are entitled to get this report from the government agency that oversees the type of truck involved in the accident.

In addition, trucking companies are now using devices much like the “black box” in an airplane. These instruments can provide crucial details including how fast the truck was going before the accident, when the driver used the breaks, patterns of speed, and how many hours the truck had been on the road.

If you have been involved in an accident with a truck, an experienced attorney can help you discover and request information about the vehicle and driver involved. It is important to remember when selecting an attorney to represent you in a case involving a commercial tractor-trailer that they are very different from a typical auto accident. Cases involving tractor-trailers often require specialized knowledge about the rules and regulations that pertain to commercial motor-vehicles.

Meet Your Team

Tad Thomas - Trial Lawyer

Tad Thomas

Managing Partner

Tad Thomas has dedicated his practice to representing plaintiffs in various types of civil litigation, including personal injury, business litigation, class actions, and multi-district litigation.

After graduating with his law degree in 2000 from Salmon P. Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University, Mr. Thomas immediately opened his own private practice and began representing injury victims.

In 2011, Thomas Law Offices was established in Louisville, Kentucky. Over the past decade, Mr. Thomas has expanded his firm and now has offices in three additional locations: Cincinnati, Ohio, Columbia, Missouri, and Chicago, Illinois. He is also a frequent lecturer on topics like trial skills and ethics and technology.

Free Case Evaluation

At Thomas Law Offices, our personal injury attorneys recognize that our potential clients are likely going through some of the most difficult times of their lives. We don't want you to have to worry about paying out-of-pocket for legal advice when you're just starting to learn your legal rights and options. That's why we provide free case evaluations. We'll offer our expert advice about your potential case and walk you through how we can help you.

Call us or fill out the form below to tell us about your potential case and a personal injury lawyer will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Legal & Firm News

Mike Campbell Named 2021 Missouri & Kansas Rising Star

Thomas Law Offices is proud to announce that Mike Campbell has been named a 2021 Super Lawyers’ Rising Star in Missouri and Kansas.

Read More

Distracted Driving and Augmented Reality Windshields

Distracted driving is the cause of a significant portion of car accident injuries and fatalities every year. As technology advances, it often seems that there are only more gadgets and features to distract drivers, but augmented reality windshields could change all that. While augmented reality windshields are still a ways from being introduced to the […]

Read More

Product Liability and Packaging Issues

When you make a purchase, whether you’re buying a toy for your child, a kitchen appliance, a gardening tool, or something else, you expect it to work, and you expect it to be safe to use. Dangerous products can cause serious injuries, and negligent manufacturers, distributors, and sellers should be held accountable for losses. While […]

Read More