When a passenger car is in a collision with a tractor-trailer, injuries often range from severe to catastrophic to fatal. A common scenario is when a tractor-trailer is merging from a ramp onto a highway. With as much truck traffic as Maricopa County has, these accidents aren’t uncommon.
Cars Can Even Become Stuck and Dragged
Tractor-trailers can be more than 70 feet long and weigh up to 80,000 pounds. They have large blind spots all around them. A tractor-trailer is almost always traveling at a dangerous speed when merging into traffic on a highway, and in many cases, it’s accelerating too. If the truck driver is merging into highway traffic and fails to see a passenger car in the lane next to it, a tragedy can occur. An impact can cause the driver of the passenger car to lose control, and other vehicles could become involved in the crash. Given the height of the trailers that are pulled by trucks, there is also a grave danger that a car will become trapped under its trailer.
U.S. Truck Merging Statistics
According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, about 30% of all large truck crashes involve merging into traffic. More than 4,100 people died in large truck accidents in 2017 across the country. Of those fatalities, 68% were drivers or occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles.
Given the size of the blind spots that surround big-rigs, due care and caution must be given to the other vehicles that they share the roads with. A truck driver who fails to see another vehicle in a blind spot and causes a collision can be liable for negligence. Here are some of the damages that the truck driver can be held liable for:
- Past and future medical bills.
- Past and future lost earnings.
- Any permanent disfigurement or disability.
- Pain and suffering.
- Loss of enjoyment of life.
- Funeral, burial and other significant damages in the event of a wrongful death.
If you were injured in a merging truck accident, or if you lost a family member in one, contact our truck accident attorney’s in Mesa as soon as possible to arrange for a free consultation and case assessment. You can tell us what happened and how it happened. After that, we’ll answer your questions. Then, we’ll recommend what legal options we think you should exercise. Don’t give a statement of any kind to an opposing insurer. Arizona law doesn’t require you to do that, and it will only be used to attack your credibility in the future. Protect your rights, and call us first.