Did you know that almost 5.4 million non-fatal car accidents happen every year in the United States? While these accidents may not have resulted in deaths, there’s no denying that any type of auto accident can be a traumatic experience for everyone involved.
But what happens if you’re involved in a tractor trailer accident?
Unfortunately, tractor trailer accidents are a bit more complex than a typical automobile accident. Because of the sheer size of these vehicles, the accidents themselves are often much worse. And because commercial drivers often work for companies that keep accident lawyers on retainer, it can be difficult for other drivers to seek fair compensation. Tractor trailer accident attorneys can help you navigate the legal waters surrounding these accidents, but some general knowledge is also important to have. Keep reading to learn about the major differences between car accidents and tractor trailer accidents.
Risk of Severe Injuries
While it’s true that there’s a risk of severe injuries in any car accident, a tractor trailer accident involves a vehicle that can weigh up to 80,000 pounds in some cases. Compared to a traditional domestic vehicle, which weighs anywhere between 3,000 and 5,000 pounds, tractor trailers take longer to stop and exert much higher force upon collision. The sheer difference in size and weight between normal vehicles and tractor trailers means there’s a much higher likelihood of severe injuries or fatalities in these types of accidents.
A car accident typically only has one liable party, which makes personal injury claims and determining car accident rights relatively straightforward. A tractor trailer accident, on the other hand, doesn’t necessarily operate by those standards. Not only do truck accidents often involve multiple vehicles, but the truck driver’s employer may also be liable. When determining a liable party/defendant in a truck accident, tractor trailer accident attorneys must consider:
- The truck driver
- The truck driver’s employer
- The truck owner
- The trailer owner
- The truck manufacturer
For all of these reasons and more, a truck accident lawsuit can get complex very quickly, and it’s not something you should try to tackle on your own. A truck accident lawyer is able to navigate these complexities while advising you on the best course of action. With so many potentially liable parties, it’s important to seek assistance from an individual who is familiar with these types of cases.
Tractor trailer accidents have the potential to be deadly. As with all matters of the road, it’s important to be especially cautious and drive with care. If you ever find yourself involved in a tractor trailer accident, make sure you consult legal professionals about your options.