When it comes to property damage, injuries, and death, truck accidents are one of the most dangerous types of automobile crashes. Commercial trucks are larger and heavier than most other vehicles on the road, so any car they strike is likely to be severely damaged.
Truck accidents commonly result in catastrophic injuries and death. While truck accidents themselves are extremely damaging, there is one type of accident that is particularly hazardous. Underride truck accidents account for nearly one-quarter of all truck accident deaths each year.
Victims or loved ones of those involved in underride truck accidents can work with the San Francisco, CA and Bay Area attorneys at Bowles & Verna LLP to learn more about their legal rights following an accident.
Causes of Underride Truck Injuries
Most underride truck accidents occur when a truck has slowed or stalled, and an oncoming car is not able to stop in time to prevent striking the back of the truck.
Another common cause of underride truck accidents is when a truck recklessly changes lanes and doesn’t leave enough room for oncoming vehicles to stop or slow down.
Underride truck accidents have the potential to cause catastrophic injuries or death, so there are regulations in place that require commercial trucks to maintain certain safety features, such as a truck guard, to prevent smaller vehicles from sliding beneath the trailer. Unfortunately, despite these regulations, passengers of smaller vehicles who hit the backside of a commercial truck may be catastrophically injured or killed.
The primary causes of these injuries include the following:
- The trucking company ignored safety regulations and failed to have a truck guard installed
- The truck guard was damaged or in need of maintenance and the trucking company neglected to service it
- A truck guard was in place, but it failed under the impact of the accident
Determining liability in underride truck accidents can be tricky because most insurance companies assign the blame for a rear-end accident to the driver of the trailing vehicle. However, if a truck driver’s actions made it impossible for the trailing vehicle to slow or stop in time to prevent the accident, or if safety hazards increased the injuries or damage of a truck accident, the driver or trucking company may be held liable for a portion of, or all of, the accident damages.
Experienced truck accident attorneys, such as those at Bowles & Verna LLP, will gather the evidence necessary to prove liability in an underride truck accident case so that injury victims can be justly compensated for their losses.
If another party is found liable for an underride truck accident, then injury victims may be due financial compensation for their losses. Potential damages in an underride truck accident include medical expenses, the cost of ongoing medical services, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
In some cases, the liable party may also pay punitive damages.
If an accident victim is killed as the result of their injuries, surviving family members can seek financial compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in an underride truck accident, you should work with truck accident attorneys that can protect your legal rights. Contact us at your earliest convenience to set up a legal consultation with one of the experienced attorneys at Bowles & Verna LLP.