Accidents involving large commercial trucks often result in severe injuries and extensive property damage for those in and around the Philadelphia area. These accidents occur in a wide variety of ways throughout Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Here, we want to discuss the main causes of crashes involving larger trucks. With this information, we hope that you can take the steps necessary to stay safe when you are out and about on the roadways.
How Often do These Incidents Occur?
When we look at data available from the National Safety Council, we can see that there were over 5,000 large commercial trucks involved in fatal collisions across the country during the latest reporting year. Additionally, researchers show that 118,000 commercial trucks were involved in injury-causing collisions during that same year.
When we look closer at the Commonwealth, data from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation shows that there were 6,344 total collisions involving heavy trucks across the state during the latest year. However, this data is slightly lower when compared to previous years. There were fewer heavy truck collisions in 2020, likely as a result of the lockdowns placed upon the state at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
How do Commercial Truck Crashes Occur?
The Penn DOT states that the vast majority of heavy truck collisions were caused by vehicle failure. The data indicates that many of these collisions were caused by the following:
- Tire or wheel related failures
- Break related incidents
- Unsecured trailers or overloaded trailers
- Powertrain failure
- Total steering system failure
- Trailer hitch or improper towing issues
- Suspension failure
- Lighting related issues
Trucks are much more likely to fail in the event they are not properly inspected or maintained by the drivers and trucking companies responsible for the vehicles. Additionally, truck failure, or the failure of individual parts, could be the fault of the manufacturers of the vehicles or the parts. In these cases, it may be possible to hold the manufacturers responsible through a product liability lawsuit.
However, truck failure is not the only cause of these incidents. Often, large truck crashes in Pennsylvania are caused by the careless or negligent actions of drivers on the roadway. Large truck crashes are likely to occur in the event a driver:
- Fails to abide by hours of service requirements
- Operates while impaired by alcohol or drugs
- Operates while distracted by their phones
- Fails to follow traffic while his
- Operates too fast for conditions
- Fails to yield the right of way to other drivers
Working With an Attorney
If you or somebody you care about has been injured in an accident involving a large commercial truck in Pennsylvania, you need to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. These incidents can become incredibly complicated when working to recover compensation for your losses. A Philadelphia truck accident lawyer will be able to conduct a complete investigation into the incident in order to gather the evidence needed to prove liability. They will explore all avenues for recovering compensation for these claims on behalf of their client. This will include payment for medical bills, property damage expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering losses.