Professional truck drivers receive specialized training for handling the large vehicles that transport cargo on the state's many major roads. When a truck accident occurs, victims need to understand their rights to ensure that they receive due compensation and are not intimidated by legal teams from large companies.
A recent major accident on Interstate 10 southwest of Beaumont brought potential dangers of the presence of super truckers, who travel fast to meet quotas or delivery times, to light. The 140-car pileup in Thanksgiving traffic allegedly resulted from a combination of foggy weather on the major thoroughfare and large commercial vehicles attempting to plow through the area at high speeds.
Fatalities 60 Percent More Likely in Accidents Involving Commercial Vehicles
According to data released by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), as of 2005, accidents involving commercial vehicles were 60 percent more likely to result in fatalities than accidents not involving commercial vehicles. The number was drawn from a measurement of fatality rates per 100 million vehicle miles traveled and brings to light the risks related to traveling alongside large trucks.
The FMCSA's Fatality Analysis Reporting System noted that a full quarter of fatalities in accidents caused by large, speeding trucks occurred during difficult weather conditions. Authorities noted that a fatality during the I-10 pileup allegedly resulted from a tractor-trailer slamming into an SUV.
Lower speed limits for large trucks may help prevent these incidents, but a report from the Transportation Research Board found that a correlation between differential speeds and additional safety or risk could not be made through empirical data. Texas has recently moved toward higher speeds instead of lower, with its first 85 mph stretch opening in September.
Getting Help After Being Injured in a Truck Accident
It is very possible for those in smaller vehicles to sustain serious injuries or die as a result of accidents involving commercial trucks. The FMCSA reported 4,995 fatal accidents involving large trucks during 2005, and 106,000 accidents resulted in injuries.
The period after an accident can be fraught with confusion and complications. Those who have been injured in a commercial trucking accident or lost a loved one in such a crash should turn to an attorney experienced with the laws and regulations that govern that industry. The right lawyer can help a family receive due compensation for lost wages, medical or funeral expenses and other unforeseen expenses arising from the incident.