Semi-trailer trucks, also known as 18 wheelers, are massive vehicles that share the road with people commuting and traveling in their cars every day. When it’s an 18 wheeler versus a car, the car and its diver and passengers are not going to win. Serious and sometimes fatal injuries to people within the car are much more likely to occur than if it were just two cars.
The Advocates at Advocates Law want you to know the dangers of these 18 wheelers. We can also help you decide if getting an 18 wheeler accident lawyer is in your best interest after a truck accident.
Semi-trucks need regular maintenance. However, sometimes costs and time come into play making it difficult to provide the needed maintenance on these 18 wheelers. The braking system of trucks is one of the most important parts of the truck to keep maintained. Without proper upkeep, the brakes will suffer from brake fade and imbalance, causing 18 wheelers to be unable to stop quickly to avoid an accident.
Brake fade is when there is too much heat on the brakes, causing the brake pad and disc to connect improperly. Often, 18 wheelers have multiple braking systems to avoid this, but when one fades, the others take on the load and wear those brakes out faster. Brake imbalance can occur when 18 wheelers has incorrect brake components, which may cause the back of the truck to swing out and cause extensive damage to other cars on the road.
One of the reasons why you shouldn’t tailgate or stay in an 18 wheeler’s blind spots is that if one of the trucks wheels blew out, the flying rubber could damage your car and cause you to run off the road or into another vehicle. Tire blowouts on 18 wheelers can happen at any time—there is unfortunately no real warning before it blows.
There are many reasons for tire blowouts. Though 18 wheelers are required to have regular maintenance, many still run on tires that have tread depths too low for driving and some even keep driving on them after until the tires have noticeable flat spots. In addition, an overloaded truck will put too much weight on tires that are generally cheap and not recommended at higher weights.
18 wheeler truck drivers do not have much time for sleep. They adhere to a strict transport schedule and then are allowed a 10 hour break afterward. However, during this 10 hour period they are often waiting for their cargo to be loaded or unloaded, finding a good place to park their massive rig, eating, and bathing. That 10 hour window quickly whittles away.
Many truckers will tell you that they usually only get about 4 to 6 hours of sleep between trips. While many rely on caffeine and other stimulants to stay awake they are still likely exhausted from their trips. It is incredibly rare for an 18 wheeler driver to fall asleep at the wheel, but lack of sleep has been shown throughout many studies to result in poor judgment and slow response times.
If you were injured by a semi-truck then it is very likely you will need an experienced 18 wheeler accident lawyer. The size and weight of these large vehicles against a car can cause severe injuries and property damage. Your 18 wheeler accident lawyer will know how to negotiate with the trucker’s insurance company to get you a fair and often considerable settlement since many commercial vehicles’ insurance policies have high limits.
The Advocates at Advocates Law has an experienced and knowledgeable 18 wheeler accident lawyer waiting to speak with you. Your initial consultation is always free and confidential.