Even though truck accidents are nowhere near as common as other motor vehicle collisions, they tend to be the most catastrophic incidents on the road. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), semis, 18-wheelers, and other commercial vehicles account for around 13% of all traffic deaths in the US. Plus, Florida is in the Top 10 among all states when it comes to the highest percentage of fatal truck crashes; together with the other nine, these states make up more than half of all truck accident deaths.
With these statistics in mind, you will definitely do all you can to avoid being involved in a Miami truck accident. Prevention starts with recognizing the hazards, so you are in a better position to react and avoid them. The top causes include:
Improper Lane Change Collisions
Together, a truck tractor and trailer can be up to five times longer than a passenger vehicle. When a driver carelessly moves into an adjacent lane, that length becomes a significant liability. To make a safe lane change, the operator must:
- Plan ahead and monitor the space around the vehicle;
- Double check blind spots;
- Avoid making abrupt movements; and,
- Always use turn signals before moving into a different lane.
Rear End Accidents
With the heavy load that many trucks are hauling, the driver must allow plenty of time to stop when approaching a signal or if traffic ahead slows. An operator may fail to ensure proper care by following too closely, speeding, driving too fast for conditions, or driving while distracted. Plus, the acts or omissions of others can contribute to a rear end truck crash. If the trucking company does not properly maintain the vehicle, including brakes and tires, the risk of serious accidents increases. You can do your part by slowing gradually and avoiding abrupt stops.
Truck Driver Loss of Control
A jackknife crash is one of the most devastating types of truck accidents because the operator is often helpless to correct the movement once it begins. Loss of control can occur from a tire blow out, taking curves too quickly, or hitting a large pothole in the road.
Occupants of passenger vehicles are at risk of fatal injuries in an underride collision, when the car slides under the trailer of the truck. These accidents may be linked to missing reflective tape, defective trailer lights, or making abrupt U-turns. A truck driver may also cause an underride accident by misjudging the speed of oncoming traffic when making a left turn.
Set Up a Free Consultation with a Miami Truck Accident Lawyer
If you were hurt in a truck crash caused by these or any other factors, you could be entitled to recover compensation from the negligent driver. To learn more about your legal remedies, please contact Gerson & Schwartz, PA at our offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach, FL. We can schedule a no-cost case evaluation with a member of our team, who can explain how these cases work in more detail.