“I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck.” You’ve probably woken up some mornings and said that. There's a good reason that the expression integrates a “truck” and not a car.Trucks Generate Tremendous Force, Even at Low Speeds
We all learned in high school that force = mass x acceleration. A car weighs around 4,000 pounds. An SUV weighs an average of 4,800. An EMPTY tractor trailer weighs 35,000 pounds and when filled to its legal limit, reaches 80,000 pounds. So, a truck produces 20 times as much force as a car at the same speed. It doesn’t take Albert Einstein to see that this makes Truck Accidents dangerous.
Any vehicle is a dangerous weapon when it’s on the move, but a behemoth Kenworth or Peterbilt is a whole other level of danger. If you are clobbered by one of these, and it doesn’t take much of a hit, the insurance company still will come up with an argument to diminish a settlement offer. We hear: your client stopped short; it was only a tap; the truck driver says your client cut in front of him. The first two excuses are typical insurance nonsense.
A tap from a 40-ton vehicle is not a tap. For example, an operator stopped with his foot on the brake can still have his SUV shoved forward, jamming his femur back into his hip joint and suffering a labral tear. If your client had to make a quick stop for traffic ahead of her, that hardly excuses a truck driver who hadn’t maintained a safe distance.Give Trucks Extra Room
The third of the above listed insurance company excuses, “your client cut in front of the truck”, has some validity, particularly if the maneuver was promptly followed by a reduction in speed. Passenger vehicle operators do have to be mindful of the challenges faced by those behind the wheel of giant transports. And while Massachusetts drivers are not noted for their courtesy, you may want to heed the advice in the joke about what you call a 2000 gorilla… “Sir”.Factors Other Than Driving Play a Role
Frequently, traffic reports include traffic or lengthy backups from a truck rollover. Abrupt stopping and jackknifing may be the cause, speed around a cloverleaf exit may have triggered the event, improperly maintained equipment may be the culprit. Truck drivers are also susceptible to the same distractions that other drivers face, and distracted driving is an epidemic in all types of vehicles. At Marcotte Law Firm, we look at all the possibilities when the obvious ones don’t explain the event. One such example is improper loading.Was the Truck Too Heavy?
Loading methodology is highly regulated, as are many other facets of truck operation. When we represented a truck driver who lost control of his truck when a 50,000-pound crane counterweight in the trailer slid forward, we recovered a verdict for the driver against the company that loaded the counterweight into the wrong type of transport and failed to assure it wouldn’t slide. Because regulations require the driver to check the load, no settlement offer ever was tendered. But the jury adopted our argument that the wisdom of the professional regulators should have governed the actions of the loading company as well.Your Collision With a Truck Should Drive You to Marcotte Law Firm
Whether you have been in a collision with a truck, or have been the injured driver of one still trying to determine for yourself what happened, you should contact the Truck Collision Lawyers at Marcotte Law Firm. We understand the different dynamics, and we know when and where to look when explanations may not be obvious.