Semitruck accidents: When are vehicle drivers are at fault?

The law that applies to semitruck accident claims is different from the law that applies to normal car crash claims. That's because semitruck drivers and transportation companies must adhere to an array of different rules and regulations that apply to the commercial trucking industry and their drivers. When a semitruck driver violates one of these many laws, an injurious or fatal auto collision results, the driver and his or her employer will likely be liable for any related financial damages.

That said, many semitruck accidents are not the fault of the truck driver, but rather, they're the fault of a normal vehicle driver that got into the accident. Here are a few examples of semitruck accidents caused by normal vehicle drivers:

The vehicle driver was driving in the "no-zone." The no-zone refers to the areas around a semitruck where the driver cannot see through his or her mirrors or with his or her eyes. When drivers are operating their vehicles in these blind spots, they can cause an accident to occur.

The car driver wove around a semitruck too abruptly. Semitrucks are slow and heavy vehicles. They cannot navigate traffic in a nimble way like smaller cars. As such, normal car drivers need to give semitruck drivers plenty of space and time to react by not making abrupt turns, accelerations or slowdowns around a big rig.

Being in the right-hand turning path. If a semitruck has started to turn right, part of its trailer is going to cut across a section of the road. Once the truck driver has begun his or her turn, the driver might not see a car that has suddenly driven into this zone. And that could result in a crash.

Unsafe passing. If a car pulls out in front of an oncoming semitruck in order to pass a slower-moving vehicle, it could result in a head-on collision. Semitrucks may need to maintain their speed and path in the face of an oncoming vehicle, or they could risk losing control and causing an even worse accident.

If you were hurt in a semitruck crash due to no fault of your own, you might want to investigate your legal options to pursue a financial recovery relating to the incident.

Source: FindLaw, "Common Causes of Truck Accidents," accessed Jan. 12, 2018

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