Overland Park Truck Accident Attorneys, Johnson County, KS
Helping Kansas truck accident victims and their families in their time of need
Commercial trucks have distinct requirements over other motor vehicles. The average length of a large truck is about 70 to 80 feet long, compared to the length of 10 to 14 feet of the average car or SUV. In addition to its size, the average weight of a commercial truck is about 80,000 pounds. Because of their colossal size and weight, trucks require additional time to come to a complete and safe stop. And, just like their size and weight, a truck’s blind spots are also larger than that of the average motor vehicle. These distinctions are what make truck accidents so deadly.
At Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, our Overland Park truck accident lawyers understand how catastrophic truck accidents can be for victims and their families. We show that negligence on the part of a truck driver, trucking company, or manufacturer caused your injuries – and then fight to hold all responsible parties liable for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering caused by the accident. Contact one of our personal injury lawyers serving Overland Park today to get started.
How common are truck accidents?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports 5,005 people killed in accidents that involved large trucks in 2019. The organization also reported that in the same year, large trucks were the vehicles more likely to be involved in multi-vehicle accidents.
What are the most common causes of truck accidents?
There are certain elements of the trucking industry that contribute to accidents. Long periods of transporting cargo, as well as meeting tight deadlines, can cause truck drivers to engage in negligent behaviors while driving. For example, truckers can experience fatigue while driving for extended periods of time, causing them to fall asleep behind the wheel or consume illicit substances in an effort to stay awake.
Other causes of truck accidents include:
- Speeding. Because trucks require additional time to brake, speeding decreases the possibility of stopping in time to avoid an accident with a passenger vehicle, motorcycle rider, or other truck. Depending on where the truck is traveling, speeding can cause a truck to roll over and lose its balance. For example, truck drivers who speed while approaching entrance and exit ramps are at risk of losing control on the curves.
- Distracted driving. Any activity that takes a driver’s attention off of the road can be considered distracted driving. Truck drivers who travel for long periods of time are at risk of engaging in behaviors that can take their eyes off of the road, from cell phone use to eating or changing music.
- Impaired driving. Whether consuming alcohol or illegal substances, driving while under the influence reduces a truck driver’s reaction time. If a truck driver operates their vehicle while impaired, their motor skills can be extremely compromised. Even worse, some substances can cause truckers to fall asleep behind the wheel.
- Reckless driving. Truck drivers on tight schedules may engage in unsafe driving behaviors to meet those deadlines and make up for lost time. Some examples of reckless driving involve changing lanes improperly, speeding, failing to use signals, and failing to remain in their lane.
What are the different types of truck accidents?
Truck driver negligence can cause significant danger and risk to other motorists. Some of the different types of truck accidents caused by driver negligence or carelessness are:
- Rollover accidents. These types of accidents happen when a trucker loses control of their rig and rolls over. These accidents can cause serious injuries, not only to the truck driver but to any surrounding passenger cars. Any nearby vehicles are at risk of being struck by the truck and any loose cargo.
- Underride accidents. These types of accidents happen when trucks stop abruptly and the vehicle behind continues to slide underneath the truck, cutting off or crushing its top half in the process. This is one of the deadliest truck accidents, and can occur either from the side of a truck or the rear of a truck.
- Jackknife accidents. These types of accidents happen when the truck driver abruptly brakes and the trailer attached to the truck swings around at a ninety degree angle. When a truck is jackknifing, the cab and trailer are at risk of rolling over or smashing against other vehicles while turning.
- Blind spot accidents. All commercial trucks have large blind spots that prevent drivers from noticing the presence of smaller vehicles. These types of accidents are dangerous because truck drivers can attempt to switch lanes while another vehicle is occupying that lane, crashing into the vehicle in the process.
Who is liable for my Overland Park truck accident?
Victims of truck accidents can suffer serious, and often permanent, injuries. The size and weight of a truck can cause them to experience traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and traumatic amputations when involved in a collision. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, you may hold several parties liable for those injuries.
One of the main parties victims can hold liable are the truck drivers. When driving commercial trucks, truckers have an obligation to maintain and operate their vehicle in a safe manner. When they fail to perform that duty, truck drivers can be held liable for their negligent actions.
Similarly, trucking companies are responsible for the drivers they hire and the trucks they allow on the road. Even during the hiring process, there are certain protocols that trucking companies must follow to determine whether the truck driver is eligible to operate the commercial truck. Trucking companies are also responsible for maintaining proper documentation, such as the truck driver’s log records and inspection records. When trucking companies fail to maintain these records or disregard any red flags with a driver and you suffer injury as a result, they can be held liable for their negligence.
Another party that can be held liable is the truck manufacturing company. If it is proven that a truck contained defective parts and the defective parts contributed to the truck accident, the truck manufacturer can be held liable for your injuries. Some examples where vehicle malfunctions can contribute to a truck accident are brake issues, steering wheel malfunctions, and tire blowouts. In some cases, accident investigations can determine whether the parts of a truck were defective from the beginning.
Do you have a truck accident attorney near me?
Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys has offices in Overland Park, located at 11900 College Blvd, next to Central Bank, through appointment only. We also maintain additional offices throughout Kansas and Missouri.
Overland Park truck accident attorneys protecting your rights
Injured in a truck accident? Our Overland Park truck accident attorneys are ready to help. At Kansas City Accident Injury Attorneys, your case gets our personal attention. We work with investigators and experienced accident reconstruction experts to show how your crash or collision happened, and why it was preventable. We’re ready to try your case before a jury to ensure you recover the compensation to which you’re entitled. To discuss your truck accident claim, call us today at 816-471-5111 or submit our contact form to schedule your free consultation.
Overland Park Office
11900 College Blvd, Suite 301
Overland Park, KS 66210