10 Most Common Types of Truck Accidents

Just as passenger vehicles are required to share the road with bicyclists, large trucks must share the road with passenger vehicles. This means safely securing cargo, following all traffic laws, and never exceeding the federal limitations put in place to keep them and others safe. If they fail to follow these and other regulations, their negligence could cause severe injury or even death to the people in the vehicles around them.

Even with new safety procedures and devices, the number of fatalities in large truck accidents continues to rise. Our attorneys at Little Rock Trial Lawyers have handled thousands of cases of truck driver negligence and failure of due care. We believe that truck drivers and their employers should be held responsible for their negligent or dangerous actions.

If you or a family member were injured in a semi truck collision, contact Little Rock Trial Lawyers. The attorneys in our Little Rock and Fayetteville, Arkansas offices will handle your case diligently from beginning to end. We’ll help recover the compensation you and your family need for your medical bills, lost income, and other expenses. 

Call Little Rock Trial Lawyers at (501) 404-2333 or contact us online today for a free consultation.

Types of Truck Accidents

Jackknife

A semi truck is said to “jackknife” when the trailer of the truck folds in toward the cab at a 90-degree angle, resembling a small knife. These are one of the most common types of big rig accidents, and they can be caused by:

Rollovers

The laws of physics play a large role in why and how a large truck can roll over and cause an accident. Tractor-trailers have a high center of gravity, so if a truck is traveling along a curvy road and the driver brakes improperly, makes a sudden turn, or is driving with too heavy of a load, centrifugal force can cause the trailer to lean away from the direction of the curve, resulting in an overturn or “rollover”.

Tire Blowout

It is not uncommon to see pieces or shreds of semi truck tires lying on the side of the road. These tires are evidence of a blowout, which is more dangerous than it seems. Many tractor-trailers have 18 tires, so it is a big responsibility for the driver to be diligent and frequently check tire pressure and perform general maintenance. 

However, if they fail to do so, a blown tire can cause accidents with passenger vehicles, especially cars behind the truck. Causes of tire blowouts include:

Wide Turns 

Because of the shape and length of a tractor-trailer, when a truck driver makes a right turn, they must first turn to the left. The turning radius of the average tractor-trailer is approximately 55 feet. If the driver does not properly assess how much room they must give the trailer to turn, they can cause head-on or side-impact crashes with passenger cars. For example:

Rear-End 

It’s startling when a car hits the back of yours, but it’s terrifying to be rear-ended by an enormous 40-ton big rig. Unfortunately, rear-end truck accidents are fairly common, especially on crowded highways or interstates. Some common causes of these accidents are:

Head-On 

It’s a scene often witnessed in movies – a driver falls asleep at the wheel and awakens to a semi truck’s blaring horn and beaming lights headed directly towards them. In real life, a concerning number of head-on collisions between big rigs and passenger vehicles occur every year in the United States. These are one of the most deadly accidents involving tractor-trailers, and they can be caused by:

Underride 

An underride accident occurs when a passenger vehicle slides or travels beneath a semi truck and is crushed. Most of these accidents happen because of tractor-trailers’ high ground clearance. Although the drivers of passenger cars can certainly make a mistake and accidentally travel beneath a semi truck, an underride accident could be caused by a truck driver’s negligence, including:

Lost Cargo

Truckers are responsible for loading their cargo properly and safely onto or into their trailer. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration even published a guide for truck drivers to properly secure their cargo. Still, there are tens of thousands of dangerous lost cargo accidents every year in the United States. 

Because these vehicles can transport tens of thousands of pounds of potentially hazardous objects or substances such as logs, chemicals, and equipment, the consequences of an improper or careless load can be deadly. Some of the ways in which the cargo in a tractor-trailer can come loose and fall out are:

T-Bone 

The force with which a semi truck collides into a passenger vehicle can cause life-threatening injuries, especially in a T-bone (broadside) accident, where a tractor-trailer crashes into a vehicle from the side. Unfortunately, in many of these accidents, the driver of the tractor-trailer is to blame. For example:

Blind Spot 

The blind spots in semi trucks can extend almost the whole length of the trailer. So, if a trucker makes a sudden lane switch or swerves for whatever reason, the passenger vehicle in the lane beside them can be crushed or sideswiped. 

Although drivers of passenger vehicles should avoid pulling up directly beside a tractor-trailer’s right side, many blind spot accidents occur because of the trucker’s negligence. Some scenarios where a trucker can cause an accident due to their blind spot include:

Truck Accident Statistics

To best represent our clients, Little Rock Trial Lawyers actively pursues the latest reliable data coming out of the trucking industry. Experts note a significant increase in big truck wrecks since 2009, meaning there are more passenger injuries and deaths. If you or a family member were injured in a big rig collision, let our dedicated attorneys at Little Rock Trial Lawyers fight for you.

The most recent data published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports:

Where to Turn If You’re Injured In a Semi Truck Accident

If you were involved in a semi truck accident that was not your fault, pursue litigation against the truck driver or their employer. Tractor-trailers can be dangerous and come with such high risks that truckers must be held accountable for negligence that results in another person’s injury or death.

Our Little Rock truck accident lawyers see your case through to the end. We begin with an analysis of your case and an evaluation of the best course of legal action to take. We will obtain the police report, any recoverable evidence from the truck, phone records, and conduct an investigation to recover compensation for you and your family. 

Call (501) 404-2333 or contact us online today.