The trucking industry is a critical portion of our economy, generating over $250 billion each year.  Because trucking is such a large part of the economy, many truckers often work long hours without the legally mandated level of rest and then compound that with too many deliveries to make.  Drivers often drive at faster speeds and for longer hours because of the compensation systems in place and in effect cheat the system which adds to the safety concerns of the average motorist.  Inadequate training, often due to a desire to get new drivers on the road as soon as possible, may also be a factor in a crash.  Studies have shown that in over 80% of accidents involving tractor trailers, the truck driver is at fault.

            Recently a truck that was carrying a tank on its flatbed, struck several vehicles on southbound Interstate 15 in Escondido.   A Freightliner tanker truck was driving at approximately 45 to 55 miles per hour when the driver noticed that traffic was beginning to stop due to a sudden back-up on an off-ramp.  The truck driver attempted to brake, but was not able to stop the large tanker before it struck the rear of a Chevrolet.  The tanker truck struck the Chevrolet hard enough to cause a chain reaction accident where two additional cars were struck.  In addition, the Chevrolet became wedged underneath the tanker truck, trapping the driver inside the sedan.  The accident was made worse when the tanker truck caught fire.  Luckily, the Fire Department quickly arrived to put out the flames.  Sheriff’s deputies, bystanders and firefighters then removed the seriously injured driver.  He was transported by air to the University of California San Diego Medical Center for treatment.  The occupants of the other 2 cars sustained moderate to minor injuries, and were transported to Palomar Hospital.

            While accidents involving trucks are much less frequent than those involving cars and other regular automobiles, the consequences of a trucking accident are often much more serious.   Simple physics show that a tractor trailer is many times heavier and larger than the average car, or even sport utility vehicle which means that a tractor trailer can do a large amount of damage to the car and its occupants even at slow speeds.  In addition, due to the size of tractor trailers, they are also more likely to involve more than just one vehicle.

            A tractor trailer’s size is not the only thing that makes them dangerous.  A small percentage of tractor trailers haul dangerous and potentially deadly cargo all over California.  Truck cargo can range from chemicals like chlorine gas, which may escape if the tank’s hull is damaged during a crash and can be deadly if inhaled, to highly flammable materials, like gasoline or propane, which may catch fire in the event of a crash.  In these cases, the injuries immediately caused by the crash can be minor compared to the harm that may result from a tank rupture.

            It is wise to remember that a big truck cannot slow or maneuver as easily as a passenger car or SUV and the aftermath of an accident with a vehicle like this can be devastating.  Drive with extreme caution whenever you are in the vicinity of a big truck.   If you are involved in an accident with a big truck and you sustain injuries of any sort you should contact the Law Office of Guenard and Bozarth as soon as possible.  We work with you to prove your damages and we have experts that work in the trucking industry to ascertain the level of compliance a specific driver has and specific companies have.  You have the right to expect that all drivers of big trucks follow the rules as written and if you are injured as a result of their negligence you deserve compensation.

            Call the Law Office of Guenard and Bozarth at 888-809-1075 24/7/365 or visit us on the web at www.gblegal.com/truck.php for more information.  We Can Help!

Advertisements