If you’vebeen injured in a truck accident, you already know the crash was serious. A bad semi truck accident can lead to neck injuries, back injuries, and even wrongful death. In crashes involving semi trucks and passenger vehicles, typically the driver of the car is the one who gets hurt, and often the injuries are serious. Crashes involving 18-wheelers or semi trucks are some of the most frightening accidents. Semi Truck drivers sometimes break laws by driving while fatigued, in excess of the hours they are allowed, or with oversized and overloaded trucks. You need a lawyer fromEdward M. Bernstein & Associates on your side. Get in touch with an experienced truck accident attorney at 702-323-5148.
The Truth About 18-Wheeler Accidents — Straight from an Attorney
Did you know?…………..
18-Wheelers Have Major Blind Spots
It is estimated that about 38,000 people die on roads in the United States each year. Although it might seem that almost every truck accident ends in a fatality, that is not the case. There are around 500,000 truck accidents each year in the United States, but only a small fraction — about 1% — of them result in death. It doesn’t take much for a truck accident to happen. It’s much more difficult to maneuver an 18-wheeler than a passenger car. Apart from that, 18-wheelers have blind spots, which can make it impossible for their drivers to spot other vehicles in a timely manner — or at all. Eighteen-wheelers aren’t the only vehicles that have blind spots, but when we are talking about vehicles this big, their blind spots are a much bigger problem. As a result, the truck driver doesn’t have all the necessary information about what is happening on the road, which can easily lead to a truck accident. The blind spots of 18-wheelers vary, but the most common ones are:
In front of the truck. The cabin where the truck driver sits is located high above passenger cars that are driving on the road. As a result, the driver cannot see what is directly in front of the vehicle. If the driver forgets that there is a vehicle in this blind spot, a truck accident can easily take place.
On both the left and right sides of the truck.
Another blind spot is located behind the truck.
Truck drivers are aware that their visibility is limited, but you should be careful when driving next to an 18-wheeler. Most truck drivers have spent a long time driving 18-wheelers, but it’s not only a matter of experience. A momentary lapse of focus could lead to a truck accident with tragic consequences. Unfortunately, truck drivers are often driving their vehicles without enough rest, which makes it more difficult for them to pay close attention to the road. Researchers have discovered that individuals who’ve spent the last 17 hours awake have similar cognitive impairments to those with a BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration) level of 0.05%. A fatigued truck driver who is not getting enough sleep can make mistakes that could lead to a truck accident with serious injuries for everyone involved. Such situations sometimes happen due to the pressure of the trucking company. Although it is impossible to predict everything that could happen on the road, we have prepared a list of things that can significantly improve your safety.
About New Federal Regulation on Underride Guards
There is a newly-implemented rule to protect smaller vehicles from going under a truck when a crash happens. Trucks are required to have an underride guard off of the backside. However, they are not required on the front or sides. Commercial truck accidents are quite dangerous with many clients suffering serious injuries, hospitalization, surgery and long-term medical treatment. A truck accident lawyer from our firm understands how to investigate the serious injuries caused by tractor trailer crashes and 18 wheeler collisions. Our staff in Las Vegas focuses largely on auto accident cases, so we know how insurance companies operate – they try to settle cases cheaply, without concern for your future. When you hire a lawyer from Ed Bernstein & Associates, we put our legal know-how to work, fighting for fair compensation.
How to Minimize the Possibility of a Truck Accident in Las Vegas
One of the most important things to remember when driving behind an 18-wheeler is no tailgating. As mentioned above, because of the truck’s huge size, truck drivers have limited visibility. They might not see that your car is mere feet from their truck. As a result, they could brake suddenly, which could lead to a tragic truck accident. A lot of Las Vegas truck accidents are caused by drivers forgetting that trucks have huge blind spots. If a large truck is driving in front of you, you might not spot some road signs, which could also result in a truck accident.
While tailgating an 18-wheeler is not a good idea, neither is driving in front of a massive truck. If your car is just ahead of a huge truck, chances are the truck driver cannot even see you. Underride crashes often have fatal consequences, but getting crushed by the wheels of this massive vehicle is even worse. Even if your car is spotted by the truck driver, it might be too late. It takes much longer for huge trucks to stop. That’s why you should be extra careful when driving in front of an 18-wheeler.
Hope for the best, but be prepared for the worst. This doesn’t mean you should be paralyzed with fear when driving next to a big truck. Instead, you should remember that the driver in the vehicle next to you might be tired, or he might be checking his smartphone. It’s not about judging other drivers on the road but about being prepared for the things that could and do happen on the roads. If you assume that every driver is entirely focused on the road, then you might not react in a timely manner to a sudden maneuver of a truck in front of you. It’s very easy for truck accidents to happen, so it’s best to be prepared for all possibilities.
If you spot an 18-wheeler driving irresponsibly and creating a danger for other drivers, don’t hesitate to report this incident to Nevada Highway Patrol. In addition, commercial trucks usually have phone numbers on the back of the vehicle. Remember, by reporting the dangerous behavior on the road, you could save someone else’s life. It takes a lot of responsibility and skill to drive an 18-wheeler. A driver who is either exhausted or distracted can cause a truck accident very easily.
About the Ban on Texting and Cell Phones
Apart from lack of sleep and mental fatigue, truck accidents often happen due to distractions that make it harder for drivers to focus on the road. According to a 2014 report from the National Safety Council, the use of mobile phones while driving is responsible for 26% of all car accidents on American roads each year. That’s why there are laws in different states that prohibit drivers from using cell phones while behind the wheel. In some states, it is illegal for drivers to use cell phones altogether, whereas in other places the ban only relates to texting and driving. In Nevada, you can only use a hands-free cell phone while driving.
About New Federal Regulations on Underride Guards
Each year, more than 200 deaths caused by underride crashes are reported in the United States. What is a truck underride crash? This kind of crash occurs when a car “slides” under a truck from behind. Part of the car may be crushed in the collision. It is extremely dangerous — usually a truck accident of this type leads to the death of all passengers in the car. That’s why more than 20 years ago a bill was introduced that made it necessary for all commercial trucks weighing more than 10,000 pounds to have underride guards installed.
How Can Hiring a Las Vegas Truck Accident Attorney Help You?
If you have been recently involved in a Las Vegas trucking accident, you might be looking for Las Vegas truck accident lawyers. If you have sustained injuries in the truck accident, you probably don’t want to deal with all the paperwork and stress alone. What are the benefits of hiring Las Vegas truck accident lawyers?
They will analyze the driver’s log. Determining the cause of a truck accident is extremely important. If the driver was involved in numerous truck accidents, it might be a sign that his driving skills are lacking or that he often drives while exhausted. Such information could lead to the other party being announced 100% responsible for causing the Las Vegas truck accident.
If you want to receive fair compensation for a trucking accident that wasn’t your fault, you shouldn’t agree to any deals offered by the insurance companies. Most people who were involved in truck accidents don’t know how to deal with insurance companies. Unfortunately, no matter the extent of your injuries caused by the trucking accident, they will try to avoid paying an adequate settlement. Proving that you are partly responsible for the trucking accident is one of the most common methods used by insurance companies. If the trucking accident took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, and you are 20% responsible for the crash, your compensation is reduced by 20%. Our truck accident lawyers know how to deal with insurance companies so that you don’t have to settle for less than you deserve.
Besides driver negligence, the trucking company could be responsible if the records show that a lack of maintenance or inadequate maintenance of the vehicle caused the trucking accident. Our task is to discover who is responsible for truck accidents that our clients were involved in, and we won’t stop until they receive fair compensation for their injuries. In addition, our experienced attorneys will interview witnesses who will help determine who was at fault.
The type and the severity of your injuries will impact the offers you’ll receive from the insurance company. Trucking accidents often lead to injuries that take a long time to heal. Because of that, it is not enough to take the current medical costs into account — you also have to think about the future costs of treatment. Your injuries might prevent you from working or even from taking care of your family. Our experienced truck accident lawyers will ensure that all the medical costs of treating your injuries are considered when reaching a settlement.
Guidelines from a Las Vegas Truck Accident Lawyer
Here are elevenuseful guidelines that our experienced lawyers advise after a tractor trailer or 18-wheeler accident:
Do not panic, and do NOT flee the scene for any reason.
Call the Las Vegas Police Department or Nevada Highway Patrol if you’re able to.
If authorities do not show up at the scene of your tractor trailer or semi collision after being requested, report it to the Vegas Police Department.
If injured, see a doctor as soon as possible. An 18-wheeler wreck can cause serious injuries, which are not always immediately apparent.
Get information from the other party involved, including name, address, phone number, driver’s license number (including expiration date), license plate number, registration, and insurance company information such as the company name, address, phone number, and policy number.
If the owner of the large vehicle is not the same as the driver, you should also obtain the same information from the owner.
Look for any witnesses to the accident. Get their names, addresses, and phone numbers. This includes people who saw what happened but were not involved.
Tell your insurance company that you were involved in a truck accident. Get your claim number and verify the coverage that is available under your policy.
Make a police report and notify your insurance company immediately about the truck accident, even if the trucker flees the scene. If you are in a hit-and-run accident with a truck in Las Vegas, contact our law firm right away.
If the driver/owner of the vehicle did not have motor vehicle insurance (which is a violation of Las Vegas law), you need to verify whether you have uninsured and/or underinsured motorist coverage. Some insurance companies require prompt notification of these claims and reserve the right to deny benefits to those who do not follow requirements of their policies.
If you or someone you care about was in an 18-wheeler crash, then call 702-323-5148 or email us at Contact@EdBernstein.comfor a free consultation with an experienced attorney. Your Las Vegas truck accident lawyer will fight any insurance company that tries to prevent you from getting a fair settlement.Call a lawyer to take your case now.