Tractor Trailer Accidents in New York Cause Danger to Drivers
Tractor trailer accident lawsuits are on the rise. Driving in New York is not always easy, and tractor trailer accidents in New York pose a serious threat. How many times have you been late because of traffic caused by volume or construction? How often have you been at a standstill from an accident up ahead? We have all sat in at least one traffic jam because of a tractor trailer stuck under an overpass. Sometimes it seems like the roads around here just weren’t made for so many or such diverse vehicles. After all, our highways were planned and built almost a century ago.
Our narrow roadways, low overpasses and high amounts of traffic make it especially dangerous when passenger vehicles must share the road with eighteen-wheelers. While any vehicle accident can cause serious and even fatal injuries, even a small accident with a tractor trailer in New York can be deadly. The size and weight alone of a big truck makes it inherently dangerous.
Increasing Number of Fatalities with Truck Accidents
Over 3,500 people died in accidents with large trucks in 2013, approximately 15% more than in 2009. Nearly 70% of the people who died were in passenger vehicles.
For these reasons, the trucking industry is highly regulated. There are rules that govern the size of their equipment, weight of their cargo, maintenance, driving time, and much more. The rules exist to ensure safety on our roads. However, as evidenced by the statistics, and despite the regulations, tractor-trailer accidents happen far too often.
What Factors Contribute to Truck Accidents?
It would be logical to assume that because of the size and weight of tractor trailers, drivers would always exercise extreme caution when driving. We know this is not always the case. Many drivers, including truckers, disregard speed limits and fail to stop at signs and red lights. A truck going even slightly over the speed limit may be unable to brake in time to avoid a collision at an intersection or in a traffic jam. If the driver is distracted, he may have even more difficulty stopping in time.
Excessive cargo loads also hamper the ability of a truck to come to a safe stop whether on the dry or wet pavement. When a truck that is over the weight limit set by safety regulations, the truck may tip or jackknife when the driver tries to apply the brakes, causing a tractor trailer accident with passenger vehicles.
Truck Accidents Caused by Driver Fatigue
Driver fatigue is a problem as well. Truck accidents in New York can lead to serious injury or death. There is a legal limit to the number of hours a trucker can drive during a day and week. A driver is required to take a certain number of breaks during a shift. However, given the pressure of deadlines to deliver goods on time, it is no wonder that so many drivers ignore these rules. A tired driver is dangerous, and being under pressure to deliver goods on time worsens the situation.
Faulty equipment or maintenance can also cause trucks to be unsafe. There can be many parties who have some control over any given truck, and any one of them can make an error that causes it to be dangerous. A person may improperly secure cargo, fail to repair or replace worn brakes, or miscalculate the weight and size of freight. The manufacturer of one of the truck parts may have produced something with a defect. Any of these can lead to a serious truck accident in New York.
Truck Dangers Exacerbated During Bad Weather in New York
Across the country, there were numerous accidents caused by icy, stormy weather and high winds. Many of them involved large trucks, causing horrible injuries. The rainy days of spring may result in even more tragic accidents on our roadways. When you combine wet weather conditions, pressure on drivers to deliver their goods, and the inherent dangers of tractor trailers, the results can be deadly.
Perhaps your awareness of some of these dangers will spur you to exercise extra caution and successfully avoid accidents with tractor trailers.
If you have suffered an accident with a truck or other motor vehicle, please let us know. Call and speak with one of our New York personal injury attorneys at Leeds Brown Law to find out what rights you may have, and to see if we can help you recover any compensation you may deserve from a tractor trailer accident or other personal injury action.