When vehicles collide during an accident, damage to both cars and injuries to their occupants can occur. However, when a car is involved in a wreck with a semi or other large truck, the results may be much more grave. According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, 68 percent of car passengers died in such crashes, compared to 17 percent of those driving the large trucks. If you plan on filing a lawsuit connected to a loved one’s death as a result of a large truck crash, there are a few facts about these incidents that you may want to understand first.
1. Differences in Vehicle Size
One of the main factors that cause passenger or driver deaths in sedans and SUVs that are struck by semis is the difference in the vehicle’s size. Although some late-model SUVs and pickups are built with many safety features, the sheer size of a semi can cause devastating damage. The front grills are typically tall and broad, which means they might strike a smaller vehicle in a way that makes the safety features useless.
When large trucks travel at high speeds, drivers may lose control. When this happens, the trailer may sway or leave a highway lane and cause the truck to jackknife. The higher the rate of speed when a semi strikes a car, the greater the odds that someone in the vehicle may be killed. If you believe a big rig driver was speeding when the accident occurred and caused the death of a loved one, this is a detail you might want to submit to your attorney.
3. Weather Conditions
Rain, snow, and sleet can all cause difficult driving conditions, and when a semi driver ignores them, it can increase the odds of a highway crash. Empty tractor-trailers can be affected by high winds and strike smaller vehicles in adjacent lanes, which may cause them to leave the highway or roll over. A negligent driver may be named in a wrongful death lawsuit if they ignored dangerous weather conditions.
4. Inability to Brake Quickly
Most big rigs are equipped with air brakes that do not allow them to stop suddenly. As a result, these vehicles are usually traveling at higher speeds when they strike a smaller vehicle in the rear or the side. Because of this inability to stop quickly and prevent an accident, there is a higher chance of a fatality.
Big truck crashes can include circumstances that increase the odds of a fatality when these vehicles strike a smaller car. Contact a truck accident lawyer, like a truck accident lawyer in Salt Lake City, UT, for more information.
Thanks to Rasmussen & Miner for their insight into why truck accidents are more likely to have fatalities than regular car accidents.