If you have been injured or a family member has died in a truck accident, you need an experienced and skilled truck accident lawyer to help you defend your rights and interests.
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We see the person behind the injury, and we know that each person is different. What may be helpful to one person may not be helpful to another. We take the time to find out what’s important to you and what your goals are. We will strive to meet your objectives.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in East Texas
Truck accidents are complex, and there is frequently a combination of contributing factors. For example:
- Driver fatigue. Although federal law limits the number of hours a trucker can stay on the road without rest, some drivers break these rules – often under pressure from their employers. A drowsy driver at the wheel of an 80,000-pound tractor-trailer is a scary scenario that can easily cause a tragic crash.
- Speeding. When a truck is going over the speed limit in a specific area, the driver may lose control of the vehicle, take a turn too fast, or have inadequate visibility. Higher speeds also increase a truck’s already lengthy stopping distance.
- Equipment failure. The most common equipment failure causing truck accidents is brake failure. There could also be problems with the trailer, one of the wheels, or some other malfunction that causes the driver to lose control of the truck.
- Improper loading or failure to secure load. If a truck’s cargo has not been adequately secured, it may shift once in motion, and could fall off the back of the truck, possibly causing an accident. It could also create an imbalance, causing the truck to tip or roll. Improper loading is more likely to happen if the load is secured by an inexperienced worker, or if there is not an adequate inspection of the load.
- Driving while impaired. Although many accidents caused by impaired drivers are the result of alcohol intoxication, because of the restrictions on alcohol and other drugs for commercial drivers, it is more likely that the intoxicating substances at issue in these accidents are over-the-counter drugs, stimulants, etc. Any substance that affects the brain may alter a trucker’s decision-making abilities and reaction time, making a wreck more likely.
- Driving too fast for conditions. If a truck driver drives the same speed as normal even when roads are wet or slippery, visibility is low, or winds are high, it is more likely that the driver will lose control of the truck and cause an accident. Trucks drivers dislike reducing speed because it puts them on the road longer and delays the delivery. Due to the heavy weight of the trucks and their loads, braking distance is often increased in bad weather. High winds and fog or smoke are other conditions that should cause truckers to slow down.
- Distracted driving. If a driver is distracted by something, such as a phone, radio, or looking for something in the truck, they will not be prepared to react if something unexpected happens. Many accidents are caused by distracted truckers.
- Tailgating or aggressive driving. A driver who is tailgating or swerving around another vehicle or is otherwise not allowing a safe stopping distance will not be prepared to react if another vehicle stops suddenly or makes an unexpected move.
- Speeding in order to meet unreasonable trucking company deadlines. If a trucking company does not allow a large enough window in which to arrive at a destination or make a delivery, the driver may feel forced to make up lost time by speeding, which can cause an accident.
- Driver training and experience. New drivers, who are more unfamiliar with the handling of their vehicle, can cause accidents because of their inexperience. They may not be familiar with how long it takes for the vehicle to stop, or may misjudge the length or width of the vehicle when backing up or turning.
- Vehicle design and manufacture. The design or manufacture of certain trucks may create a mechanical issue that leads to a crash, or it may cause a driver who is unfamiliar with the features of that particular truck to misjudge stopping distance or turning radius, and thus cause an accident.
- Unfamiliarity with roadway. A truck driver who is driving on an unfamiliar stretch of road may not be aware of certain features of the road, such as dips, changes in speed limit, or tight turns. If they are not paying close attention, they may cause an accident.
Our Firm Helps Injured Victims of Truck Wrecks
If you have sustained serious injuries in a truck crash, or if you have lost a loved one due to a truck accident, talk to a truck accident attorney at the Sloan Firm as soon as possible. As your attorneys, we will investigate the circumstances and causes of the accident, and start amassing the evidence and documentation necessary to take your case to trial or negotiate a settlement.
Our team consists of qualified and experienced lawyers, investigators, paralegals and support staff who care greatly about your case. The best claim can be built with sufficient effort and time, but your case needs to be brought before the statute of limitations has run out, so do not wait to schedule a free consultation at our offices in Longview, Houston, or Santa Fe.