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Semi-truck drivers may spend upward of 300 days per year on the road and log in excess of 125,000 miles per year. Given the time truck drivers are behind the wheel and the adverse conditions they often face, perhaps it’s no surprise that commercial vehicle driving is one of the most dangerous jobs in America.
Unfortunately, when it comes to crashes involving semi-trucks it is often the innocent occupants of passenger vehicles who suffer. In 2016, the last year for which comprehensive crash data is available, large truck accidents resulted in more than 4,200 fatalities; the same year, large truck crashes caused an additional 55,000 injuries.
While driver error is a factor in most passenger vehicle crashes, there may be multiple elements at play in semi-truck accidents.
Though there may be other contributing factors, driver negligence still plays a role in many semi-truck accidents:
Commercial vehicles and their related components are sometimes put into service with a design flaw or manufacturing defect that makes them dangerous to their drivers and others on the road. In recent years, semi-trucks and their corresponding parts have been recalled due to:
If a defective vehicle or faulty vehicle part contributed to a crash, the manufacturer may be held liable for damages.
Tractor-trailers and other commercial vehicles that are overloaded or improperly loaded increase the risk for a crash as well as the potential severity of that crash.
Yet cargo loaders sometimes exceed weight limits or are careless in how they balance the freight. When improper loading is a factor in a crash, the shipping agent or cargo loader may be held accountable.
Because of wear-and-tear on semi-trucks and tractor-trailers, they require more frequent maintenance than most passenger vehicles.
Poorly maintained vehicles increase the risk for a crash. Trucking companies and maintenance providers can be held liable for damages if inadequate maintenance plays a role in a crash.
Semi-truck and other types of commercial drivers are in high demand right now, and shipping companies sometimes employ drivers who aren’t yet ready for the demands of the job. Inexperience can adversely affect how truck drivers deal with challenging circumstances, such as heavy traffic, hazardous weather or dangerous road conditions.
When an unqualified driver causes a crash, the trucking company or truck owner may share liability for resulting injuries and other damages.
The Cincinnati attorneys at Young, Reverman & Mazzei are dedicated to helping semi-truck accident victims from Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana recover the financial security they need to get their lives back on track. Please call us today at 513-721-1200 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.
We serve injury victims in the greater Cincinnati and Dayton areas, as well as Campbell, Kenton and Boone counties in Kentucky and Dearborn County in Indiana. See our Locations page for a complete list of offices and directions.
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