When driving a passenger vehicle in and around the Philadelphia area, you’re likely to find yourself in close proximity to commercial trucks. While this is most common on the interstate, don’t be surprised if you come across these vehicles in a city setting as well.
Since a car-truck accident has the potential to cause serious injury and extensive damage, it’s important to understand the most common causes.
- Distracted driving: If a trucker isn’t paying attention to the road for any reason, they’re more likely to cause an accident. For example, a trucker that doesn’t see slow traffic ahead could strike a vehicle from behind, thus causing a chain reaction accident that injures many.
- Driving under the influence: Alcohol, drugs and prescription medication have the potential to impact a driver’s judgment, decision-making and alertness.
- Reckless driving: It’s likely that you’ve come across a reckless trucker in the past. Common examples include excessive speeding, weaving in and out of traffic, illegal passing and neglecting to use turn signals.
- Inadequate training: Commercial truckers should receive training from their employer on things such as defensive driving and driving techniques. Without the proper training, there’s a greater chance that a trucker will cause an accident.
- Improper loading: There is a right and wrong way to load a commercial truck. Making a mistake in this area can increase the risk of tipping or losing a load in traffic.
You don’t have the ability to control the decisions that truck drivers make, but you can do these things to enhance your safety:
- Make yourself visible at all times
- Use turn signals
- Never pass a truck in the right lane
- Leave enough space when changing lanes in front of a truck
- Take extra caution when merging onto the highway in close proximity to a truck
- Never drive between two commercial trucks for a long period
If you’re injured in a car-truck accident caused by a negligent trucker, call 911 and administer first aid until help arrives.
Focus your immediate attention on your health, to minimize the long-term impact of the injuries. Once you’re stable, you can file an insurance claim and determine the best way to seek compensation from the negligent driver (and possibly their employer).
Visit our website and read our blog for more information on all types of motor vehicle accidents.