Experiencing a vehicular accident is the last thing anyone wants to be involved in. Unfortunately, statistics show that the average driver will experience one crash bad enough to involve insurance about once every 17.9 years. Chances are, these crashes will be more hurtful for your pocketbook than for your body, but those rates change dramatically when the accident involves a large truck.
Accidents involving large working trucks are on the rise. The increasing demand for timely delivery in our world of instant gratification is pushing truck drivers to drive longer and longer hours and push their trucks harder. This often results in single-vehicle accidents involving the truck, or accidents involving other vehicles.
Many people mistakenly assume that there is little difference between an accident with a truck and a collision with another car, but this can’t be more wrong.
Here are five key ways that truck accidents differ from car accidents:
The average U.S. semi-truck weighs over 80,000 pounds. The average car? 3,500 pounds.
What that means is that even minor collisions between cars and trucks can be severe. Cars involved in accidents with semi-trucks can have their vehicles totaled and become injured even if both vehicles are moving at a slow pace. This is just unfortunate physics because of the size and power difference in the two vehicles. This is why it’s crucial to be extra vigilant when you’re driving near a truck. Trucks have much more exaggerated blind spots and need more stopping room than the average vehicle, so give them a good berth and don’t cut them off when merging.
Semi-trucks aren’t just huge, heavy working vehicles, they are also exceptionally expensive. In fact, new trucks start at around $80,000, and custom features can push that price tag all the way up to $200,000. What this means is that a sleepy driver can cause an insanely expensive amount of damage to their truck if they get in an accident. Even minor accidents can be pricey for truck drivers, since fixing semis is a specialized business and most truckers who are subcontracted will be unable to work if their truck is damaged.
When you’ve been involved in an accident with a semi-truck, the liability is vastly different than if you were involved in an accident with another car. This is because trucking accidents involve many people and a company or agency, depending on what type of trucker the driver is. This is why it’s often recommended that you involve a law firm like Frekhtman & Associates that are familiar with trucking accidents.
If you have an accident with a commercial truck, then the driver may work directly for the company and have insurance through them. However, they could also be a subcontractor hired by a company and carry their own insurance and be solely liable.
Then there is also the truck manufacturer. If it’s believed the truck may have had a faulty part that caused the accident, then insurance may look to the truck manufacturer as the responsible party.