Before turning, changing lanes, merging, going through an intersection, or completing any other maneuver behind the wheel, truck drivers are responsible for checking to make sure they can do it safely. This includes checking all mirrors and blind spots.
However, many truck drivers don’t look in the required direction or look but fail to notice an approaching vehicle. When this happens, truck drivers may cause an accident and put innocent motorists at risk of serious, life-altering injuries.
The Albuquerque truck accident lawyers at Parnall Law are here to help you take legal action against negligent truck drivers to seek financial compensation when inadequate surveillance causes a crash.
Hurt? Call Bert. Contact us now for a free claim review and advice about your best legal options.
How Truck Drivers Are Supposed to Act Behind the Wheel
An estimated 14 percent of large-truck crashes were caused by inadequate surveillance, according to the Large Truck Crash Causation Study (LTCCS). Because of their size and weight, 18-wheelers and other large commercial trucks pose a unique threat to other motorists. The danger is especially real when truck drivers turn or change lanes without looking first.
Truck drivers owe other motorists and pedestrians a duty of care when operating these large, heavy vehicles that are capable of causing severe or fatal injuries if involved in a crash. Commercial trucks have many blind spots, and truckers must be alert and aware of any smaller vehicles that might be in them.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, truck drivers should follow proper safety precautions, including the following:
- Know Your “No-Zones” – No-zones are danger areas around a truck where an estimated one-third of all truck accidents happen. These can be blind spots on either side of the truck where other vehicles disappear from the driver’s view, or places in front and behind a truck where drivers have difficulty seeing objects. Truck drivers should be aware of blind spots and stay alert for vehicles, people, and other objects at all times.
- Practice Safe and Defensive Driving – When truck drivers drive defensively, they are operating in a manner where they can avoid accidents by keeping a safe distance from the car ahead of them, driving the speed limit, and staying alert. By driving safely and recognizing potentially dangerous situations, truck drivers can avoid a catastrophic accident.
- Carefully Approach and Enter Intersections – Adequately surveilling an intersection means looking left, right, and left one more time before pulling out or turning. By taking the time to look both ways, truck drivers can avoid dangerous crashes.
- Check Your Mirrors Often – One of the requirements for truck drivers to change lanes safely is regularly checking their mirrors. By checking mirrors, truck drivers can be aware of approaching traffic and notice when a car enters a no-zone.
Truck drivers must operate their vehicles safely. When they don’t, they put innocent people in harm’s way. If your accident was caused by an unsafe truck driver who didn’t see you before changing lanes or entering an intersection, our experienced Albuquerque car accident lawyers are ready to help you take legal action.
How Inadequate Surveillance Accidents Happen
Compared to passenger vehicles, commercial trucks have bigger and more numerous blind spots and no-zones, and therefore, a higher risk of an inadequate surveillance crash. With an average length of 70-80 feet, tractor-trailers not only increase the number of blind spots, but also the size.
While other drivers should do what they can to stay out of a truck’s no-zones, it might not be possible to avoid them. Even with available technology like wide-angle cameras, truck drivers still are required to have additional blind spot mirrors.
Driver fatigue could also lead to inadequate surveillance. Truck drivers are required to drive great distances over long hours. If a driver is tired, they could make a dangerous mental mistake like failing to check blind spots, observe traffic signs or signals, or watch for vehicles turning or changing lanes near them.
Additionally, truck drivers can cause an accident by simply not being aware of their surroundings or driving while distracted.
Driving is not a passive activity. Along with frequently checking mirrors, truck drivers should also look far ahead down the road to anticipate slowdowns or any other potential hazards that might lead to an accident. And like many civilian drivers, truck drivers who choose to use their phones to talk, text, use social media, or browse the web could fail to observe crucial events on the road while driving.
How Parnall Law Can Help
The aftermath of a truck accident can be a scary and stressful time for you and your family. Along with physical damage to your vehicle, you may need extensive medical care and lengthy rehabilitation before you can return to work and move on with your life.
Our Albuquerque truck accident lawyers are prepared to investigate every aspect of the accident and find the necessary evidence to support your claim so you can seek the financial compensation you need.
Investigating your case on your own can be impossible without the financial resources and years of legal expertise. Additionally, the amount of work it requires can be impossible to handle while recovering from injuries or grieving a loved one. Let a qualified and experienced truck accident attorney at Parnall Law handle every aspect of your case.
Contact Us Today
Even the most careful driver could suffer catastrophic injuries if a truck driver fails to observe their surroundings responsibly. If you have been injured in a truck accident due to the actions of a negligent truck driver, the time to act is now.
The longer you wait to take legal action, the harder it will be to prove your injury claim. To pursue the full and fair compensation you’re owed, contact an experienced Albuquerque truck accident attorney at Parnall Law right away.
We have successfully helped others like you get the compensation and justice they’re owed. We’ll be ready to discuss how we can assist you when you call us and schedule a free consultation.