California Tractor-Trailer Accident Attorney
Due to its beautiful weather, all-year sunshine, and favorable climate, California has a large population of farmers. But the farming industry is dangerous, and sadly, farming accidents result in approximately 120,000 serious injuries and 1,300 deaths annually. While these injuries and deaths can be the result of numerous different factors, they’re often caused by incidents that involve a tractor or trailer. Furthermore, California freeways have a huge number of trailers traveling on its roads and freeways every day. These big, heavy vehicles have an increased risk of causing serious or fatal accidents due to their sheer size and weight.
If you have been in a tractor-trailer accident in California, you should speak with an attorney as you may be entitled to compensation. The California tractor-trailer accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates can help. With multiple offices located in Irvine, Anaheim, Los Angeles, El Segundo, San Diego, and Riverside, our truck accident attorneys represent victims across California. For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with a lawyer, please call 949-727-9300.
The Most Common Types of Tractor-Trailer Incidents
Approximately 74% of fatal truck accidents involve tractor-trailers. Due to the huge size and weight, any incidents involving tractor-trailers can be detrimental and sometimes fatal. Additionally, the chances of an accident are increased by the fact that tractor-trailers can be difficult to maneuver and have decreased braking distance due to their heavy weight. Unfavorable weather conditions, terrain, and driver negligence can also lead to an accident occurring. Tractor-trailer incidents can take many forms, but the following are the most common:
- Rollover crashes: Tractors and trailers are more likely to roll over when going around a curve or up or down a steep incline, particularly at high speeds. If a rollover accident begins to occur driver is no longer in control and there may be catastrophic consequences for anyone in the way.
- Tire blowouts: Tire blowouts are dangerous no matter what type of vehicle is involved. But with a tractor-trailer, the chances of a tire blowout becoming catastrophic are higher. Often, blown tires on these vehicles lead to increased chances of a rollover accident occurring.
- Jackknifing: This is when the trailer cab or tractor is facing one direction and the trailer itself facing the other. Poor road conditions, improper braking, and defective equipment are some of the most common reasons why a jackknife accident might occur.
- Underside accidents: This often happens when a tractor or trailer brakes suddenly, causing other vehicles to collide with the rear or sides of the trailer. This type of accident is hazardous, as the size of a passenger car in relation to the tractor-trailer means it can easily become crushed or pushed underneath the trailer.
Causes for Tractor-Trailer Accidents
There are a number of reasons why a tractor-trailer incident might occur. Depending on conditions, vehicle maintenance, driver negligence, or even just one-ff circumstances, accidents involving tractor-trailers can end up being catastrophic and even fatal. But even though there are many potential contributing factors, three primary reasons have been identified as the most common causes of tractor-trailer incidents. These are:
- The tractor-trailer was traveling out of its lane and into another lane without warning. This might be due to driver negligence or driving under the influence.
- The driver losing control from driving too fast, a shift in weight or cargo, system failure, a maintenance issue, poor road conditions, or unfavorable weather.
- The tractor-trailer is running into the back of another vehicle, typically due to failure to maintain sufficient braking distance or brake failure.
Unfortunately, driver error or negligent driving is also a key factor in many tractor-trailer incidents. In many cases, drivers simply fail to perform, often due to falling asleep behind the wheel, becoming inattentive or distracted, or making poor driving decisions. Speeding, failure to allow enough time to stop, inability to judge road conditions, or driving under the influence are just some poor decisions that can lead to a fatal incident. In some cases, driver negligence is entirely accidental and unintentional, such as over-correcting.
When is the Trucking Company Responsible for a Trailer Accident?
Trucking companies are responsible for accidents for a variety of reasons. If the incident involves a tractor, the company that owns the tractor may also be liable in some cases. Here are a few reasons why a company might be liable for an accident
- Inability to track how many hours drivers are required to drive and how many hours they must rest.
- The background of the driver was not sufficiently checked. Companies are required by law to check each applicant’s driving records and police accident reports.
- Logbooks are not kept up to date with regular inspections and repairs or the truck or tractor is improperly maintained.
- Drivers are pressured to keep up with unrealistic schedules in order to deliver their products to the destination so the driver can collect maximum reparations. This causes drivers to operate the vehicle when tired or can lead to speeding in order to meet deadlines.
Common Injuries Caused by Tractor-Trailer Accidents
Sadly, injuries caused by tractor accidents can be severe and may result in a lifetime of pain, discomfort, inconvenience, and even disability. Unfortunately, any indecent involving a truck, tractor, trailer, or other large vehicle is far more likely to cause severe injuries. Common injuries include:
- Spinal cord and nerve injuries
- Neck and back injuries
- Crushing injuries, particularly to the chest and torso
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Bruising and lacerations
- Internal bleeding
- Disfigurement and burns
Of course, physical injuries aren’t the only type of damage that such a tractor-trailer accident might cause to victims. Other types of problems or trauma can also be catastrophic, such as financial loss, expensive medical bills, and psychological and emotional trauma. Whether a victim experiences physical injuries or another form of loss, anyone involved in a tractor-trailer incident is entitled to compensation.
When filing a claim against a company for its involvement in a tractor-trailer incident, victims must have proper representation. Large companies will be very adequately prepared for such cases and will likely have a team of experienced lawyers ready to represent them. For this reason, having a professional attorney on your side will significantly increase the likelihood of you receiving the compensation you deserve.
Contact an Experienced California Tractor-Trailer Accident Lawyer
If you or a loved one has been in a tractor-trailer accident involving debris in California, you should discuss your legal options with an attorney as you may be entitled to compensation. The California tractor-trailer accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates can then help determine if you have a valid accident claim.
With multiple offices located in Irvine, Anaheim, Los Angeles, El Segundo, San Diego, and Riverside, our truck accident attorneys represent victims across California. For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our attorneys, please call 949-727-9300.