Force equals mass multiplied by acceleration. This is Newton’s Second Law of Motion, and a basic principle of physics. In terms of motor vehicle accidents, it means the heavier the vehicle, the more force it has when it collides with another vehicle. This is why accidents involving big trucks can be so dangerous to people in smaller vehicles.
Recently in North Carolina, at least two people were injured when two tractor-trailer trucks and a smaller pickup truck collided with each other. The accident occurred on U.S. Highway 64 E in Asheboro. According to officials, two of the drivers were transported to area hospitals. The third was apparently uninjured and refused help from emergency medical services.
As of this writing, few details had been reported, but it appears that the drivers were very lucky. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 4,102 people were killed in accidents involving large trucks nationwide in 2017. A large majority, 68%, were occupants of smaller vehicles such as passenger cars and pickup trucks. Only 17% were drivers of the large trucks, while 14% were motorcyclists, bicyclists or pedestrians.
Even when a truck accident is nonfatal, the injured may have life-changing catastrophic injuries. The injured may be permanently disabled and need medical care for the rest of their lives.
Because of these losses, the stakes are high in personal injury claims involving truck accidents. These cases are also more legally complex because they can involve questions of employer liability. State and federal trucking regulations can also be important in these cases.
It’s important for the injured and their families to get help recovering compensation for their damages. An experienced personal injury attorney can advise them of their rights and options.