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Why Are Truck Accidents So Serious?

On Behalf of Christian Ayers
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Truck accidents have a far greater potential for disaster, injury, and death than other vehicle accidents for a number of valid reasons. You may be wondering, “Why are truck accidents so serious?” If you have been involved in a truck accident, contact a Charlotte truck accident attorney.

According to information gathered by the North Carolina Department of Transportation, there were over 9,000 traffic accidents involving a large truck in 2021 alone. Of that 9,000, nearly 100 of them resulted in a fatality. It is no secret that surviving a truck accident is somewhat miraculous.

Why are truck accidents so serious?

Common Causes of Truck Accidents

The main reason that truck accidents are often so much more serious than those involving smaller vehicles, like cars and motorcycles, is the size of the vehicle in question. The bigger the vehicle involved in the crash, the bigger the potential for disaster. If a fully loaded cargo truck tips over on the highway while traveling at 60 miles per hour, it could cause a massive pile-up, numerous injuries, vast amounts of property damage, and even some casualties.

Truck drivers have a stronger obligation than most to constantly be aware of their surroundings. They must also do what they can to lessen the possibility of danger that’s caused by their vehicles. The speed, size, and power of a large truck can cause irreparable damage to every other driver on the road if the right conditions are present.

Truck accidents are unfortunately common, as accidents do happen all the time. The last thing truckers want is to be added to the list of the worst truck accidents in history. Here are some of the more common causes of truck accidents that can cause catastrophic damage:

  • Driver Fatigue: Long-haul truckers sometimes drive for days at a time without a break. Federal driving regulations stipulate that truck drivers should operate their vehicles for only 11 consecutive hours, and they should also rest for 10 hours. Many truckers do not abide by these guidelines for whatever reason. Maybe they’re behind schedule or trying to get ahead of schedule. Regardless, fatigue sets in easily. A sleepy truck driver can cause untold amounts of physical and emotional damage to other drivers if they cause an accident.
  • Poorly Loaded Cargo: Cargo must be loaded properly when it is transported via cargo truck. Improperly loaded cargo can be the cause of unbalanced weight distribution, which can cause the truck’s equilibrium to spiral out of control and lead to a deadly crash. In a crash caused by poorly loaded cargo, the cargo may even spill out onto the road, causing even more chaos.
  • Speeding: Large trucks are not easy to control. They are even harder to control when they are exceeding established speed limits. Speeding remains one of the leading causes of truck accidents nationwide. Exceeding the speed limit decreases the amount of time that truck drivers have to react to obstacles on the road, other drivers, or inclement weather. The weight of the truck requires a significant stopping distance that cars simply do not require.
  • Inexperience: Driving a commercial truck is not something you can just jump into on day one. It requires specific training and vocational courses. However, not every company can afford to hire someone with experience, and some are forced to take who they can get. Inexperienced drivers, who may not know how to react properly when faced with an equipment malfunction or shifting cargo, can be very dangerous on the road.


Q: Why Are Trucking Accidents a Serious Issue?

A: Trucking accidents are a serious issue because they have the potential to cause untold devastation if they happen on crowded roads or highways. The weight and size of a large cargo truck can make the accident significantly worse than one involving smaller vehicles, like cars, motorcycles, and smaller trucks. It is important for truck drivers to be aware of the power they are wielding behind the wheel. The slightest slip-up can cause rampant destruction and irreparable damage to many lives.

Q: What Is the Leading Cause of Death for Truck Drivers?

A: According to a study from NMS Health, the leading cause of death for truck drivers is chronic illness. Truck drivers tend to sit still for prolonged periods of time, which can cause the development of various chronic illnesses, as can a diet of largely processed foods and long, irregular hours. Truck drivers are more likely to become obese than other workers. They are also twice as likely to take up smoking, as it can help truck drivers overcome fatigue.

Q: Are You More Likely to Survive a Crash in a Truck?

A: Yes, according to some studies, you are more likely to survive a crash if you are in the truck. Trucks are bigger, reinforced, and more likely to protect the driver and any passengers. Cars are considerably smaller and are unlikely to escape a truck accident without damage to the vehicle and/or injury to the driver and passengers. Most truck accident fatalities are not occupants of the truck but rather pedestrians or passengers of the other vehicle involved.

Q: Why Are Truck Accidents Different?

A: Truck accidents are different because the vehicle is significantly larger and more massive when compared to other vehicles on the road, apart from buses or construction vehicles. They require a much greater stopping distance to bring the vehicle to a full stop, which can be the cause of a substantial accident. Furthermore, the vehicle’s sheer size, when compared to a car, makes an injury or fatality almost certain.

Reach Out to an Experienced Truck Accident Lawyer Today

Surviving a truck accident can be one of the most traumatic and significant events of your life. You may wish to seek compensatory damages from the party responsible for the accident, which is reasonable. The legal team at Ayers, Whitlow & Dressler is prepared to help you build your case, talk to insurance companies on your behalf, and represent your interests in court if it comes to that. Contact us to schedule a consultation after your truck accident.