A fully loaded 18-wheeler is going to be somewhere around 70 feet long and weigh in the neighborhood of 80,000 pounds. Severe injuries and fatalities aren’t unusual when they crash. Here at Tobler Law, our Phoenix truck accident attorneys put our knowledge and experience in truck accident law to work for you to help you get the compensation that you deserve.
When the driver of an 18-wheeler is drowsy or fatigued, he or she is suffering from sleep deprivation. It’s one of the major causes of large truck crashes, severe injuries and fatalities. A fully loaded 18-wheeler is going to take 20 to 40 percent more roadway to come to a complete stop on a dry road than a passenger vehicle. When a truck driver is drowsy or fatigued, reaction time, depth perception and sound judgment are all affected. That means it’s going to take even longer to come to a complete stop.
Who is Put at Risk?
It’s safe to say that when a trucker is driving drowsy, everybody on or near the roadway is at risk. As per the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), when a large truck kills, 84 percent of the fatalities involve people in passenger vehicles, those on motorcycles, bicycles and pedestrians. A disproportionate 16 percent are drivers or occupants of trucks. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has compared drowsy driving with drunk driving. It says that driving after being awake for 17 hours is like driving with a .05 blood alcohol concentration. At 24 hours of being awake, it’s the same as driving with a beyond legally drunk .10 blood alcohol concentration.
As opposed to drunk driving, there’s no scientific method that can be used to determine whether a truck driver is driving while drowsy. Lights and a siren from a squad car are going to awaken anybody. Police can’t check the truck’s “black box” at the side of the road, and log book entries are easily altered or faked. Truck drivers know this, so drowsy driving is easily denied.
Don’t expect to be treated fairly by a trucker’s insurance company, and never give it a statement of any kind without a Tobler Law attorney being present on your behalf. If you were seriously injured in a drowsy driving truck crash, of if you lost a family member in one anywhere in or around Phoenix, contact Tobler Law. We’ll fully advise you of all of your legal alternatives.