A Truck’s Blind Spot Is Extremely Dangerous
When you are driving down the roadway near a large commercial truck, you probably driver cautiously. Crashes with these vehicles can lead to serious injuries for those inside passenger vehicles. One thing you want to be sure to do is to avoid the blind spots of a large truck.
At The Hayes Law Firm, we know that a truck’s blind spot is the most dangerous area around the vehicle. If you have been in an accident, we are here to help.
Truck Accidents Can Lead To Serious Injuries
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were more than 148,000 injuries and 4,761 fatalities as a result of a large truck crash during the latest reporting year. While not all of these crashes were blind-spot incidents, many were. These incidents often result in serious injuries for those in passenger vehicles. It is not uncommon to see these types of injuries following a truck crash:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Bone fractures and dislocations
- Loss of or damage to a bodily organ
- Dismemberment or amputation
- Other injuries that inhibit a person’s daily activities
- Significant disfigurement
These injuries will lead to serious medical expenses for the victims. If a person cannot work while they recover, they will lose the income they need to support themselves and their families.
How We Can Help You Or Your Loved One
If you or someone you care about has been injured due to the careless or negligent actions of a truck driver failing to check their blind spot, you may need to seek legal assistance. At The Hayes Law Firm, we are here to help. Let us investigate what happened in your case in order to secure the following:
- Your medical expenses related to the truck crash
- Lost wages and benefits if you cannot work
- Pain and suffering damages
- Loss of personal enjoyment damages
- Possible punitive damages against the truck driver or company
All vehicles have blind spots except for motorcycles and bicycles. A blind spot is an area around a vehicle that cannot be seen by the operator of the vehicle. Since trucks carry cargo, they have larger blind spots than any other type of vehicle because there are no rear-view mirrors available.
Also, carrying cargo can reduce visibility in a truck’s side-view mirrors. However, if a truck collides with a passenger vehicle due to a blind spot, the trucker could still be held liable for the crash because truck drivers are trained to be alert to the possibility of vehicles entering the truck’s blind spot.
Unless you hire an attorney, the truck driver and the trucking company will most likely use your presence in the truck’s blind spot as their defense to blame you. Our lawyers at The Hayes Law Firm will help you collect and preserve evidence by reviewing the trucking company’s policies regarding background checks, screening of truckers upon hiring, and its compliance with federal trucking laws.
Where Are The Truck’s Blind Spots?
In general, an average commercial truck has four major blind spots:
- The front of the truck. This blind spot, which is formed due to the truck hood being at a considerable height above the road, can stretch up to 25 feet from the truck’s front bumper.
- The rear of the truck. This blind spot can stretch up to 225 feet back from the rear bumper and is considered the truck’s most dangerous blind spot, especially when a truck changes lanes or comes to a full stop when traveling at high rates of speed.
- The left side of the truck. The blind spot extends from the truck driver’s door to the trailer’s midsection.
- The right side of the truck. The blind spot stretches from the front and goes all the way back to the rear of the truck. This particular blind spot is much larger than the blind spot on the left side, which is why it is never advised to pass a truck on its right.
Is A Truck Driver Responsible For The Crash?
When a truck collides with a vehicle while changing lanes, the trucking company’s defense lawyers may try to shift the blame onto the other party by arguing that he or she was lingering in the truck’s blind spot.
The same can be said about rear-end truck accidents between a truck and another vehicle. But the crash is not necessarily your fault simply because you were present in the truck’s blind spot at the time of the collision.
Truck drivers are trained to identify vehicles before they get a chance to enter their truck’s blind spots. The likelihood of a blind spot-related truck collision can be reduced by switching lanes safely, driving below the posted speed limit, reducing speed when making wide turns and exercising extra caution when a vehicle is entering a blind spot.
Liability In A Blind Spot-Related Truck Accidents
Although it might seem that the at-fault truck driver is the only party you can sue, the trucker’s employer (more often than not, a trucking company) may also share fault for causing the crash.
Whether or not a truck driver’s employer can be held vicariously liable is the determination only an experienced truck accident attorney can make. A lawyer will review logbooks, employment records, background checks, screening policies, the trucker’s past convictions and violations of federal trucking regulations.