According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) data, about 5,000 drivers are killed annually because of a trucking accident; including 130,000 people left injured. Accidents can occur due to driver error, or due to mechanical issues. They are also very likely to cause minor to severe injury, or even fatality. Not only can it cause serious bodily injury, but it can also cause major property damage to anything it comes in contact with during an accident.

Here are some examples of types of accidents that can occur:

Truck Rollovers: If a driver loses their control over the truck itself, this can lead to a “rollover”. The truck will fall to one side and begins to slide. In doing so, it has the ability to wipe out other cars while it slides down the road. Steering issues, distraction, speeding, loss of control, improper loading of cargo, and high center of gravity can all cause a rollover.

Jackknifing: This is where the driver rapidly breaks, resulting in the trailer portion of the vehicle to swing outwards and circle back around at 90 degrees to the front of the trucks cab. Visually, this is when the vehicle assumes the position of an “L”. Any vehicle in close parameter of the truck when it jackknifes is likely to fall in the path of danger. A small car could be completely wiped off the road in this instance. Speeding, bad weather, and curvy roads can all lead to jackknifing.

Wide Turn: Another common term for this is a “swinging turn”. This is where a driver swings to the left just before making a right turn. This puts other cars at risk of getting caught between the truck and the sidewalk, potentially getting squished.

Tire Blowout: Tire blowouts are very dangerous in vehicles as large as commercial trucks. In extreme cases, this can cause a rollover. Tire blowouts can happen due to: potholes, heat, underinflation of the tire, tire wear, and truck overloading.

Blind Spots: Just as cars, large trucks have a blind spot. This puts smaller vehicles in danger because there is a possibility that the truck can’t see you switching lanes or driving next to its blind spot area. Blind spots are immediately behind the truck, directly in front, and just to its left and right sides. Avoid being in these areas as much as you can when driving near a commercial truck to ensure your safety and others.

Rear End: Rear end accidents can be extremely dangerous, and sometimes fatal due to the extreme weight of the truck itself. Speeding, distracted driving, bad weather, driving under the influence, tailgating, exceeding weight limitations, bad breaks, amongst many other factors can cause a rear end collision.

Under Ride: This is when a truck comes to a rapid halt and a smaller car that is travelling behind it gets stuck underneath the truck’s back-end trailer. This can also occur from the side of trucks, a “side under ride” collision. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has made back guards mandatory on trucks as a safety measure, but not for the side of trucks. This type of collision has proved fatal.

Lost Load: Freight that is not properly loaded and secured can fall out, posing danger to motorists. This can also result in multi-car collision when motorists try to avoid being hit with free flying freight.

Head On Collision: Head on collisions with a commercial truck can be permanently damaging to people and property, as well as there being a large possibility for fatality.

T-Bone: This can occur if a truck runs a light and comes in contact with the side of another passing car, making a “T” shape. Again, this is be severely damaging, and sometimes fatal.


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