Commercial Truck Accidents

Commercial Truck Accidents

A traffic accident with a large commercial truck is one of the most terrifying experiences any driver can imagine. The crash can leave you injured, unable to work, and increasing expenses.

If you suffered an injury in a commercial truck accident, you might need to file a claim to pay for your losses. Filing a claim with an insurance company or taking your case to court is intimidating. Start creating your legal team immediately after an accident to claim full and fair compensation. Consider reaching out to a Bakersfield truck accident attorney to assist you in navigating this process effectively.

Commercial Truck Accident Statistics

Commercial truck accidents are far too common. Large trucks weigh thousands of pounds. The results are catastrophic when a normal passenger car gets into an accident with one of these massive vehicles.

Truck Accident StatisticsAccording to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), 5,904 large trucks were involved in deadly crashes nationwide. During the same year, 4,821 people suffered from an injury after getting into an accident with a commercial truck. The number of injury-causing crashes increased by 11 percent from 115,000 to 117,000.

Accidents that cause property damage are also on the rise. Large truck accidents that caused property damage increased by 25 percent from 322,000 to 401,000.

All drivers must share the road, which means you risk getting into an accident every time you get behind the wheel. An attorney can guide you toward regaining financial stability and recovery after an accident.

Common Injuries in Large Truck Crashes

Every accident is unique. Depending on the severity of the crash, you might suffer more serious or permanent injuries.

Examples of common injuries truck accident victims suffer from include.

  • Amputations
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Broken bones and other fractures
  • Back and neck injuries
  • Concussions and other head injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Disfigurement
  • Whiplash
  • Burns
  • Lacerations
  • Emotional trauma
  • Wrongful death

Most Common Types of Truck Accidents

Some of the most common types of truck accidents include:


Rollover accidents happen when a vehicle tips onto its side or roof. There are several common reasons that rollover accidents happen, including speeding, crashing, tripping, and bad weather.

RolloversSpeeding is one of the leading causes of all traffic accidents. A speeding driver can cause a rollover accident if they hit something in the road or take a turn too quickly.

Crashing happens when the force of an impact causes a vehicle to tip on its side or roof.

Tripping might be the most common cause of a rollover accident. Tripping happens when your tire hits a curb or a ditch, the vehicle’s weight switches to one side, becomes imbalanced, and tips on its side or roof.

Bad weather explains a lot of rollover accidents. Once the road is slippery or wet, losing control of your vehicle is much easier.

Jackknife Accidents

Jackknife accidents happen when a large truck made in two parts folds into itself after a crash. Jackknife accidents have several causes, including bad weather, speeding, taking curves too quickly, and vehicle malfunctioning. Your attorney can provide clarity on your rights to recovery following a jackknife accident.

Rear-End Crashes

Rear-end crashes happen when the front end of one vehicle collides with the back of another vehicle. Rear-end accidents can happen for many reasons. Sometimes, rear-end collisions happen when the back driver is speeding.

Rear-end accidents can happen when the front driver slams their brakes too quickly. Despite this, the results can be devastating when a commercial truck driver is not careful to avoid a rear-end accident.

Head-On Collisions

Head-on collisions happen when the front parts of each vehicle slam into each other. Crashing into a commercial truck can leave your vehicle and your body with long-lasting or permanent damage.

Wide Turns

Commercial trucks are massive vehicles. Large trucks require a lot of room to turn, so they can make very wide turns. If the driver takes too wide of a turn, they can cause an accident.


Sideswipe accidents happen when two vehicles traveling in the same direction collide. The impact is on the side of each vehicle. Sideswipe accidents happen for many reasons, including speeding, fatigued driving, impaired driving, bad lane changes, merging, and distracted driving, among others.

T-Bone Accidents

A T-bone accident happens when drivers travel perpendicular to each other, and one driver crashes into the side of the other vehicle. T-bone accidents typically happen in intersections. If a trucker gets into a T-bone accident, whether they are crashed into or crashed into someone else, the results can mean critical injuries for the driver of the passenger car.

Potential Defendants Commercial Truck Accidents

There are many potential defendants in commercial truck accidents. Discovering each responsible party can be hard for an accident victim alone.

Sorting out liability might get tricky, but potential defendants in a commercial truck accident include:

  • Vehicle manufacturers
  • Trucking companies
  • Truck drivers
  • Contractors
  • Loaders
  • Mechanics
  • Shippers of hazardous materials

Enlisting the support of an experienced legal team can aid in identifying every potential defendant and ensuring they are held accountable for your losses.

Most Common Causes of Truck Accidents

Some of the most common causes of truck accidents include the following:

Impaired Driving

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is always negligent. Injury-causing accidents fueled by drunk driving are completely avoidable. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 37 people lose their lives in truck accidents every day.

Impaired DrivingRegulators hold commercial truck drivers to a higher standard than other drivers. The national blood alcohol concentration limit is 0.08 percent, but truck drivers are limited to 0.04 percent. Regulators hold commercial truck drivers to a higher standard than other drivers due to the potentially deadly impact of a crash. Commercial trucks carry hazardous materials or thousands of pounds of freight.

Regulators impose more severe penalties on commercial drivers compared to most impaired drivers. At the time of their arrest, a commercial truck driver’s CDL license faces automatic suspension. A commercial truck driver must not be convicted of DUI to lose their license.


Speeding is dangerous when large trucks are involved. Because of their size, commercial trucks take much longer to stop than passenger vehicles. Commercial truck drivers should pay close attention to their speed to avoid accidents.

Distracted Driving

Anything that takes a driver’s attention off driving and the road is considered distracted driving. Taking your eyes off the road, even briefly, can mean a serious accident.

Distracted driving comes in many forms, including cognitive, visual, and manual distractions.


Daydreaming, pondering, or getting lost in thoughts while driving – that’s cognitive distracted driving. It’s when a driver’s mind wanders away from the road, making it more likely for accidents to happen.

Imagine reacting quickly to unexpected changes on the road when your mind is elsewhere – it’s tough! Staying mindful and focused on the task at hand is crucial to drive safely.


Visually distracted driving occurs when drivers divert their attention by taking their eyes off the road. This can happen for various reasons, such as looking at a mobile phone, adjusting in-car controls, or glancing at something happening inside the vehicle.

When drivers do not focus their eyes on the road, the risk of accidents increases, as they may overlook critical information like traffic signals, pedestrians, or other vehicles.


Manual distracted driving occurs when drivers remove their hands from the steering wheel. This can happen when adjusting the radio, reaching for an item, or handling a mobile phone.

When a driver’s hands are not on the wheel, their ability to respond quickly to unexpected situations is compromised, increasing the risk of accidents. Keeping hands on the wheel and maintaining vehicle control is essential for safe driving.

Inexperienced Driving

An inexperienced commercial truck driver can cause a collision. A commercial trucker who has recently started driving might not have the skill to avoid accidents like a more experienced driver.

For example, a less experienced driver might forget an essential maintenance test before hitting the road. When that happens, the risk of an accident is much higher.

Driver Fatigue

Commercial truck driving is a high-pressure job. Trucking companies might pressure drivers to meet tight deadlines and make deliveries across states to increase profits. The long hours can lead to driver fatigue. Drowsy drivers are dangerous, but drowsy truck drivers put everyone on the road at risk of harm.

Trucks Carrying Too Heavy a Load

Loads that are too heavy or are improperly loaded can cause a rollover accident. Imbalanced loads are the trucking company and, possibly, the trucker’s responsibility.

Bad Weather

None of us can predict the weather, but we can carefully respond to avoid an accident when inclement weather happens.

Commercial truck drivers essentially wield weapons because of the size of their vehicles. Because it is harder to stop a large truck, drivers must alter their speed and avoid following too closely to prevent accidents.

FMCSA Rules and Regulations for Commercial Truck Drivers

Truck Drivers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulates the trucking industry. The FMCSA establishes rules for trucking companies and drivers to ensure the safety of everyone on the road.

Examples of FMCSA rules and regulations include:

  • Drivers must refrain from using drugs and alcohol
  • Trucking companies cannot require drivers to work more hours than federally allowed
  • Trucking companies and drivers must follow the required vehicle maintenance

If a trucking company or driver does not follow FMCSA regulations, then they might be liable for an accident if one occurs. Your attorney and legal team will investigate the cause of the accident. If the trucker or their employer violated FMCSA rules, your lawyer would hold the responsible defendants accountable for causing your injuries.

How Can I File a Claim After a Large Truck Accident?

Truck accident claims can get complicated. There are many potentially responsible defendants. An experienced truck accident attorney can guide you through the claims process to ensure you don’t miss out on financial recovery. Here is how a typical truck accident claim goes.

Expect Contact From The Insurance Company

Insurance companies often try to contact accident victims at once after a crash. Contacting you quickly after an accident happens to get you to settle quickly and save the insurance company some money.

Never speak to an insurance company before getting legal counsel. Always speak to an attorney before speaking to an insurance adjuster.

File an Accident Claim

You will work with several insurance agents during the truck accident process. An attorney can guide you through the entire process.

File an Accident ClaimAfter an accident, review your insurance policy. Your policy might require reporting the accident to ensure compliance with your policy terms. Although you work with your insurance company, that does not mean you will have a seamless experience. Having an attorney work with you before speaking to a representative from your insurance company is beneficial.

You may be working with two more insurance companies because the trucker may be the trucking company’s employee or an independent contractor. Sometimes, unrepresented accident victims cannot find the correct insurance companies alone. However, the process is easier with the help of an attorney.

How Can An Attorney Help Me?

Truck Accident Attorney, Mickey Fine

Mickey Fine, Bakersfield Truck Accident Attorney

If your case isn’t settled early in the claims process, you must proceed and work towards resolving your case. The first step is settlement negotiations. Settlement negotiations typically resolve the majority of civil cases.

An attorney can guide you through the negotiation process. However, if the insurance company does not play ball, your case will continue to trial. Don’t worry; your attorney will represent you in court, too.

Settlement Negotiations

Insurance companies are interested in saving as much money as possible, even if that means you do not get the compensation you deserve after an accident. An attorney can aid you in recognizing your damages and advocate for your rights if the insurance company attempts to provide inadequate compensation.

Represent You At Trial

If the offered settlement is inadequate, your case may proceed to trial. Navigating a court judgment process may seem overwhelming, but an attorney can guide you in securing the recovery you require. Your attorney will skillfully present your case to convince the judge or jury to grant you the compensation you deserve.

Contact a Commercial Truck Accident Attorney Today

Contacting an attorney is the best next step after a commercial truck accident. Your legal counsel can help protect your rights after a crash and guide you toward the best path to full recovery. Call an attorney today if you or a loved one suffered an injury in a commercial truck accident.

Truck Accident
by Mickey Fine Law
Last updated on - Originally published on