Reasons for Fresno Truck Accidents Due to Negligence


Reasons for Fresno Truck Accidents Due to Negligence

I’m Ed Smith, a Fresno truck accident lawyer. Being a truck driver is a tough job, and time and the number of miles a truck driver travels are important because it affects the driver’s income. In addition, truckers face pressure from their employers to bring the goods to market as quickly as possible. This combination can lead to truck accidents as short cuts are taken. 

Truck Driver Checklist

All drivers of a big rig are required to perform a vehicle inspection before taking to the road each time. This can not only be time consuming but a poorly performed inspection or maintenance by the company that employs the driver can result in accidents. Some of the items a truck driver is expected to check each time before heading out, according to Alltrucking include:

  • Wheels and lug nuts
  • All fluid levels, including tightening of all covers and caps
  • Checking the engine block for wear, cracks, fraying and leaks
  • Inspection of steering axle tires to look for wear, nails or additional problems
  • Checking for proper lubrication of king pins, ball joints and shock absorbers
  • Inspection of lights and reflectors
  • Cleaning the cab’s interior, along with checking seat belts and paperwork

Truckers Spend Long Days on the Road

Most truck drivers are paid by the mile, and loading and unloading can take several hours in addition to inspection time, so they make an effort to make good time to get their deliveries to their destinations. In addition, incentives and bonuses may be offered by employers to reward top performers. This means that a driver may become overly fatigued while behind the wheel or skip parts of the inspection to put in more driving time, increasing the risk of an accident.

Truck Accident Statistics

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, collisions involving large trucks and buses increased by 8 percent in 2015 over the previous year to 4,311, including a 20-percent increase in fatalities from the years 2009 to 2015. While the number of injuries declined by 33 percent from 2005 to 2009, between 2009 and 2015, the number of injuries increased by 62 percent. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reported 2,646 fatalities from accidents with large trucks in 2015 as well as 563 fatalities as a result of large truck collisions with bicyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians.

Major Reasons for Accidents With Large Trucks

The Large Truck Crash Causation Study conducted by the FMCSA gave the following reasons for accidents caused by large trucks:

  • Brake problems
  • Unfamiliarity with the route
  • Drivers feeling pressured
  • Fatigue
  • Aggressive driving
  • Problems with tires
  • Sickness
  • Consumption of illegal substances
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Lack of training

Injuries From an Accident With a Big Truck

Accidents with big trucks often cause devastating injuries because of the size and weight of the vehicle. They may include brain injuries, spinal cord damage, burns and internal injuries. These types of injuries not only exact a serious physical toll but result in high medical bills, an extensive stay in a hospital and rehabilitation. Some may result in permanent injury to a victim, who may require long-term care, at home attendants and no longer be able to contribute financially to the support of the family.

How a Truck Accident Lawyer Helps

A lawyer who is experienced in investigating truck accidents can help injury victims in numerous ways. This includes accident reconstruction, gathering eyewitness accounts, police reports and video footage as well as reviewing the trucker’s logs. In addition, the lawyer will investigate to see if the company that employed the trucker was at fault by providing poor maintenance to the vehicle, insisting on unreasonable hours or other signs of negligence. By proving fault in an accident, the victim can receive fair compensation for their injuries, past and future, so the family will have adequate financial coverage for their expenses.

Fresno Truck Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Fresno truck accident lawyer. When you or a loved one has been injured in a crash with a large truck, or you have lost a family member through a truck driver’s negligence, please call (559) 377-7676 for free, friendly legal advice. For those outside the area code, please call (800) 404-5400.

To view my client comments and ratings, please visit Yelp and Avvo and comments posted on Google Plus. A list of some of my firm’s previous cases and their verdicts and settlements can be found at this link.

I have practiced as an injury lawyer since 1982, representing many injured Californians, including those in the Fresno area, with their traumatic injury claims and in wrongful death cases.

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