Frisco 18-Wheeler Accident Lawyer
Large commercial trucks like 18-wheelers are a common sight on the highways around Frisco, TX. These vehicles are essential to the economy in the Lone Star State. 18-wheelers haul important freight like construction materials, retail goods, and food.
Unfortunately, 18-wheelers are also involved in many dangerous accidents. These truck collisions can be brutal. Due to their size, 18-wheelers inflict tremendous property damage as well as causing injuries. Some 18-wheeler accidents are also fatal.
If you’re involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler, you may have a long road to recovery ahead. Accident victims often need surgery, physical therapy, or rehabilitation. Many are unable to return to work or provide for their families.
That’s why it’s important to pursue an accident settlement if you’re hit by an 18-wheeler. You may be able to receive compensation for damages to help you get your life back on track. Our lawyers have helped many drivers just like you in the Frisco area. Let us help with your 18-wheeler truck accident. Call (469) 998-4069 today to request a free consultation.
18-Wheeler Accident Dangers
Also known as a big rig, semi, or tractor-trailer, an 18-wheeler is a large commercial freight truck used for long-distance transportation. As the name implies, these vehicles have 18 wheels and multiple axles. The average size of an 18-wheeler is 13 feet high, 8.5 feet wide, and 70-80 feet long.
With a full cargo, an 18-wheeler can weigh up to 80,000 pounds total. This massive weight means that an 18-wheeler can inflict serious damage in an accident. To understand the danger of an 18-wheeler in an accident, consider impact force.
Impact force in a motor vehicle accident is calculated by multiplying a vehicle’s mass (weight) by its acceleration (speed) at the moment of the accident. An 18-wheeler weighing 80,000 pounds traveling at 55 mph, therefore, delivers an impact force of 4,400,000 Newtons (units of force). That’s 20-30 times more powerful than the impact force of a small sedan.
18-wheeler accidents can also be devastating because of the driver’s limitations. Truck drivers can’t brake or swerve the way normal drivers can. Because their vehicles are so massive, a truck driver needs more time and space to perform navigational maneuvers.
If a truck driver turns or stops too quickly, the 18-wheeler may skid, flip over, or jackknife. The out-of-control vehicle may smash into other cars, motorcyclists, or pedestrians. Additionally, the disabled 18-wheeler can cause accidents if other cars on the road aren’t able to stop or swerve in time to avoid crashing into it.
Due to these factors, large trucks like 18-wheelers are often involved in fatal accidents. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that 4,136 people died in collisions involving 18-wheelers in 2018.
18-Wheeler Accident Causes
Although you can’t always prevent an accident involving an 18-wheeler, you can do your part to avoid them. By understanding some of the common causes of 18-wheeler accidents, you can be prepared when you encounter these large trucks on the road. Always use caution when driving near an 18-wheeler.
Common causes of 18-wheeler accidents include:
Truck driving can be a very high-stress occupation. Truckers work long hours and often drive thousands of miles in several days to meet tight deadlines. As a result, many 18-wheeler drivers don’t get enough rest.
A drowsy driver behind the wheel of an 18-wheeler can cause a serious accident. Studies from the National Safety Council (NSC) and other organizations suggest that drowsy driving is just as dangerous as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can also cause 18-wheeler accidents. When a driver is impaired by illicit substances, it affects their ability to control their vehicle. They may also make poor decisions and misjudge their speed or distance to other cars. No one should drive drunk or high, especially anyone operating an 80,000-pound freight truck!
Due to their size, 18-wheelers have significant blind spots. Many accidents involving these vehicles occur because the truck driver couldn’t see them. The 18-wheeler may hit a car in its blind spot, or cause an accident with other vehicles when they attempt to avoid hitting the “hidden” car.
When you’re approaching an 18-wheeler, look for the driver. If you can’t see them in their side-view mirror, they can’t see you! Always use designated passing lanes or pass on the left. As soon as you can see the 18-wheeler’s headlights in your rearview mirror, you’re safe to return to your original lane.
Stopping distance is also a factor in many 18-wheeler accidents. Unlike a regular car, it takes an 18-wheeler several seconds to come to a complete stop. This is because 18-wheelers use a unique braking system called air brakes. Although air brakes give the driver greater control, they’re much slower than the brakes used in passenger cars.
At highway speeds, it can take an 18-wheeler the distance of two football fields to come to a complete stop. Many accidents happen because the driver doesn’t have enough time to stop. They may lose control of their vehicle and skid or roll over.
18-Wheeler Accident Injuries
If you’re involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler, you may experience one or more of the following common injuries:
- Whiplash and other neck injuries
- Spinal cord injuries, including nerve damage and paralysis
- Head injuries, including traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Cuts, bruises, and broken bones
- Internal bleeding and organ damage
- Mental health problems like PTSD
If you’re suffering from injuries due to an 18-wheeler accident, be sure to explore all your legal options. You may be eligible for compensation that can help pay your medical bills.
Call our law offices in Frisco, TX, for a free consultation. We’ll answer any questions you may have about accidents involving 18-wheelers. Dial (469) 998-4069 or use our online contact form to schedule your consultation appointment now. Our accident lawyers are standing by.