Truck accidents are unfortunately a common occurrence on our roadways. Although commercial truck drivers have to undergo special training to earn their commercial driver’s license, human error still results in a large number of preventable accidents each year. Many truck drivers are responsible and follow the rules, but those who don’t risk causing accidents resulting in serious injury or death to other motorists.
Truck accidents are most commonly caused by:
- Negligent hiring. Examples of negligent hiring include failing to perform a background check, hiring someone with a history of traffic violations, or hiring someone with a history of substance abuse. Knowingly placing a dangerous or unqualified driver on the road opens the employer up to liability for an accident. Unfortunately, it is common for trucking companies to try and deny liability for an accident by claiming that a driver is an independent contractor rather than an employee, which is why it is so important to work with an experienced truck accident lawyer who can investigate the accident and hold the appropriate parties accountable.
- Driver error. Speeding, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or driving while fatigued are leading causes of accidents. Although the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set forth Hours of Service regulations designed to keep drivers from driving too long without adequate rest periods, there are some drivers who ignore these rules for profit. The result is that drivers increase their risk of falling asleep at the wheel, drifting dangerously while driving, and not being able to respond quickly enough to avoid an impending collision.
- Improper cargo loading. When a trailer is overloaded or unevenly loaded, the results can be disastrous. Trailers that are too heavy increase the stopping distance of the truck, and if the truck is driving too fast or is following another vehicle too closely, the risk of a rear-end accident drastically increases. Unevenly loading trailers, or failing to ensure that cargo is properly secured, can also be dangerous because it affects the trailer’s center of gravity and increases the chance of a jackknife accident in which the trailer swings to one side.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. A Mississippi truck accident lawyer at Kilpatrick & Philley, PLLC is prepared to thoroughly investigate your accident, protect your rights, and fight for every penny of the compensation you are due. We have recovered millions of dollars for truck accident victims throughout the state and don’t charge for our services unless we make a recovery.
For a free, no-obligation consultation with a Mississippi truck accident attorney at our firm, please call us at (601) 856-7800.