A sign on the back of an 18 wheeler states, “Would you rather be stuck behind a semi-truck or under one? Keep your distance, the life you save may be your own.” Truer words are hard to find.
Trucks play an important part in the economy. Not only do they allow people to have jobs, they also allow companies to move their goods from one place to another. Since there are so many of them on the road, it is no wonder that over 500,000 accidents involving trucks occur each year. Or that approximately one in eight traffic deaths involves a tractor-trailer, 18 wheeler, or semi-truck. If you or a loved one has been injured in an 18 wheeler accident, the Lettunich Law Firm can help. Here are a few things you should know first.
How a Truck's Makeup Contributes to the Differences Found in 18 Wheeler Accidents
If you've been involved in an 18 wheeler accident, then you know it's remarkably different than being in an accident that only entangled cars. For one thing, an 18 wheeler can weigh more than 80,000 pounds. Crash that into a car that is only about 3,000 pounds and you have a recipe for disaster. Big trucks also have a higher center of gravity. This coupled with a different braking system than a typical sedan makes it a totally different vehicle.
How 18 Wheeler Accidents are Different
Since an 18 wheeler accident can lead to destructive and costly damage, there are rigid federal rules and regulations that interstate trucking companies and their drivers must adhere to. They include rules about how much time an employee can spend on the road before taking a break, what a driver can consume while on the job and what contents can be transported. There are also laws about pre and post trip inspections and how repair work orders must be retained.
Even if their actions don't result in an accident, a driver, and the company they work for, can face severe consequences if these rules are not followed. Similar to that of an airplane, trucks tend to have a “black box” or a GPS tracking device that an attorney involved in an 18 wheeler accident case can use to both investigate and prove a case. A truck's ” black box” is a recording device that is triggered to start recording important data about the truck when it meets certain conditions. This includes slamming on the breaks. On top of that, a GPS device can offer details about the speed of a truck and its location at a given time. This is helpful when trying to reconstruct an accident.
If you are in the El Paso area and find yourself involved in an 18 wheeler accident, contact the law offices of Brandon L. Lettunich, attorney at law. They have the experience to get you what you deserve.