According to a truck accident lawyer with our friends at Martin Wren P.C., truck accidents can be devastating for everyone involved, but there is a lot of misinformation out there about what really happens in these situations. If you’ve ever been in a truck accident, you may have heard a few myths that you believe to be true. Below are the truths behind five common myths about truck accidents. You’ll get a better idea of how the law works when it comes to truck accidents and what you should do if you ever find yourself in this situation.
All Truck Drivers Are Well-Rested
Unfortunately, this is not true. Fatigue is one of the leading causes of truck accidents. Federal regulations specify how many hours truck drivers are allowed to drive and they also require that they take breaks every 8 hours or else they will face penalties. Unfortunately, these regulations are often violated as truck drivers try to deliver goods on tight deadlines. This means that they don’t get the rest they need in order to stay alert while driving, increasing the risk of an accident.
Jackknifing Only Happens in Movies
Jackknifing occurs when the trailer of a truck swings out from behind the cab, forming an angle resembling a folded pocket knife — this is something that is all too real and happens every day. This can happen when a truck driver suddenly brakes or turns the steering wheel sharply while traveling at high speeds. Jackknifing can cause serious accidents, so truck drivers must always be aware of their speed and take care when turning corners or braking suddenly.
Wet Roads Are the Only Dangerous Roads for Trucks
While driving in wet conditions can be particularly dangerous due to a decrease in traction, there are other factors to consider when it comes to truck accidents. For example, trucks are more likely to lose control when the road is icy, or when there is a strong crosswind. In addition, loose gravel and potholes can also cause an accident, as well as lack of signage or confusing lane markings. Furthermore, vehicles must give trucks a wide berth so that they can safely maneuver their turns without striking nearby vehicles or objects. It is also important to note that while heavy rain may make it difficult to see, it is not the only factor that could cause a truck to lose control.
Trucks Have the Right of Way
Truck drivers are expected to follow all the same laws as any other vehicle, including rules of right-of-way. While it’s true that large commercial trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, they must still yield to other vehicles when appropriate. Trucks may not always be able to maneuver quickly enough to avoid collisions with smaller cars, so it is important for drivers of all types of vehicles to be aware of their surroundings. This includes knowing when to yield to larger vehicles and when to use extra caution when around them.
Distracted Driving Is not a Problem for Truckers
Studies show that distracted driving among truckers is an increasing problem. In fact, according to a study conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, over 25% of commercial motor vehicle drivers involved in crashes reported some form of distraction prior to the crash. Distracted driving can be anything from checking a phone or GPS system, texting, adjusting the radio, eating or drinking, and even talking to someone else in the cab. All of these activities can take a driver’s focus off of the road and potentially lead to an accident. Truckers may also be more likely to be distracted due to the long hours and monotonous nature of their job. Many truckers feel pressure to meet tight delivery deadlines, which can cause them to become overly focused on completing tasks rather than staying safe on the roads.
If you have been injured in a truck accident caused by a distracted driver, you may have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit. A knowledgeable accident lawyer can review your case and provide advice on how to proceed; contact one today.
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