Rear-End Truck Collisions
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that annually over 400,000 truck accidents occur in the United States. About 70,000 of these accidents are rear-end collisions, where the truck has hit a passenger vehicle or where the commercial truck is the vehicle that has been hit. Oftentimes, when a passenger vehicle rear-ends a commercial truck the injuries tend to be more serious than when the truck rear-ends the vehicle.
If you've been injured in a rear-end truck collision, you may be able to recover damages for medical expenses, lost wages and property damage. Contact an Oklahoma truck accident lawyer today to discuss your legal rights.
For additional information about filing a truck accident lawsuit, complete the Free Case Review form.
Causes of Rear-End Truck Collisions
The FMSCA conducted a study on rear-end truck collisions and found some common variables among the accidents. Some common factors that contribute to rear-end truck crashes are:
- Commercial trucks that have malfunctioning brakes
- Trucks that have improperly working headlights or turn signals
- Poor lighting conditions
- Drivers under the influence of alcohol (either the truck driver or driver of the passenger vehicle)
Almost 50 percent of all fatal rear-end accidents occur when trucks are truck by other vehicles in dark but lighted conditions.
If your loved one was killed in a rear-end truck accident, you may have grounds to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Contact an experienced attorney to explore your legal options.
To schedule a free and confidential case evaluation with a wrongful death attorney, complete the contact form on the right.
Failure of Underride Guards
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 400 passenger vehicle occupants are killed every year in rear-end truck collisions. In addition, another 5,000 people sustain injuries in these types of accidents. While there has been advances in the design of passenger vehicles, they still don't provide enough protection in rear-end truck crashes.
Tractor-trailers, also known as 18-wheelers or semi-trailers, sit higher than passenger vehicles and the bottom of the trucks trailer is about the height of the passenger vehicles windshield. When a car hits tractor-trailer, the windshield and the roof pillars are the only things protecting the occupants of the vehicle. Even when a car is traveling at low speeds, it can easily slide under a truck and have its roof sheared off until the car hits the trucks back tires. When a passenger vehicle slides under the body of a tractor-trailer it is referred to as an underride accident. Vehicle occupants in underride accidents are at an increased risk for severe head injuries and death.
Many commercial trucks don't have underride guard rails installed. An underride guard rail can prevent a car from sliding underneath an 18-wheeler. Although, it is not uncommon for these guard rails to fail. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has asked the NHTSA to toughen their standards for underride guard rails. The IIHS wants all commercial trucks to have underride guards installed; at this time, regulatory gaps allow some trucks to be exempt from these regulations. Current federal standards for underride guards on trailers and semi-trailers fail to adequately protect passengers.
Filing a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Oklahoma
Rear-end truck accidents are one of the most dangerous types of accidents to be involved in, vehicle occupants are often left with catastrophic injuries. If you or a family member has sustained an injury in rear-end truck collision, contact The Edwards Law Firm for a case evaluation. After hearing about the facts of your accident, an attorney can advise you on the best legal remedy to pursue.
Our attorneys are dedicated to helping injury victims recover damages from their truck accidents. Over the years, we have helped numerous clients receive favorable outcomes for their legal claims.
To speak with a member of our staff regarding your truck collision, fill out the contact form on this page.