Truck and car accidents can have devastating consequences, leaving victims with both physical and emotional scars. While all accidents are alarming, truck accidents tend to stand apart from car accidents. In this blog, we will explore the unique aspects of truck accidents that differentiate them from car accidents.
Size and Weight Disparity
One of the primary distinctions between trucks and cars lies in their size and weight. A fully-loaded commercial truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, significantly outweighing an average passenger car that weighs around 4,000 pounds. In a collision, this disparity creates an enormous force that amplifies the impact on the smaller vehicle. The sheer mass of a truck can cause catastrophic damage, leading to more severe injuries for the occupants of the car involved.
Longer Stopping Distance
Trucks have a considerably longer stopping distance compared to cars due to their size and weight. When a truck driver needs to brake suddenly, it takes them much longer to come to a complete stop. This increased stopping distance can be a critical factor in accidents, particularly when cars are following too closely. The limited maneuverability of trucks makes it more challenging for them to avoid collisions, further increasing the risk of severe injuries for car occupants.
High Center of Gravity
Trucks often have a higher center of gravity, primarily in the case of semi-trucks that haul trailers. This characteristic makes them more susceptible to rollover accidents. When a truck tips over, it can crush nearby vehicles or cause a multi-vehicle collision, resulting in grave injuries. Car accidents, on the other hand, are less likely to result in rollovers, reducing the severity of potential injuries.
Trucks frequently transport various types of cargo, ranging from hazardous materials to large machinery. In the event of an accident, these different types of cargo can become hazardous and make the injuries sustained much worse.
For example, a collision involving a truck carrying flammable substances can lead to explosions or fires, increasing the risk of severe burns and respiratory injuries. Car accidents, on the other hand, typically lack these additional dangers, minimizing the severity of potential injuries.
Driver Fatigue and Training
Truck drivers often face long hours on the road, leading to driver fatigue. Fatigue can impair judgment, reaction time, and overall driving abilities, increasing the likelihood of accidents. Moreover, the commercial trucking industry requires specialized training and licenses. However, not all truck drivers adhere to safety regulations or maintain their training adequately. This lack of expertise and experience can contribute to more severe accidents when compared to car accidents involving licensed and regulated drivers.
If you need help navigating the legal process after a truck or car accident, contact Milles Law today. Our experienced attorneys are here to help.