A truck accident can be physically, emotionally and financially devastating. Before you can recover financial compensation for your injuries and property repairs, however, you or your San Antonio truck accident lawyer will need to determine the cause of the wreck. This is the only way to correctly identify the at-fault party. In many cases, the cause of the collision is directly related to the type of truck accident.
In a jackknife accident, the bed of a commercial truck swings out at an angle from the cab in the shape of a jackknife. Once the trailer swings out, the truck driver will lose all control of the truck. This can lead to the truck sliding into other vehicles or flipping over. Jackknife accidents often trace back to a truck driver using the improper braking technique or taking a corner too quickly.
If a commercial truck rolls over on its side or flips, it can cause serious injuries. The truck driver can suffer crush injuries, such as injuries to the spinal cord. If the truck collides with other vehicles on the road, those occupants can also suffer serious injuries. The person responsible for these injuries will depend on the cause of the crash.
A large truck could flip or rollover if the driver fails to use the proper care in controlling the big rig. If the driver was speeding downhill, for example, slamming on the brakes could trip up the tires and cause the truck to jackknife and flip. Jerking the steering wheel could also cause the truck driver to lose control and rollover, especially around corners or if the driver was speeding. In these cases, the truck driver or trucking company would be liable for damages.
An overloaded truck is another common cause of rollover accidents. In this scenario, the truck company could be liable for the negligence of its cargo loaders, or the cargo company itself could be liable. The most common cause of truck rollover accidents, however, is a tire blowout. The trucking company could be liable for an 18-wheeler tire blowout if it is guilty of negligent truck maintenance. The manufacturer of the tire could also be liable for a defective product.
Override and Underride Accidents
Override and underride accidents describe different types of rear-end collisions with large trucks. In an override accident, the large truck rear-ends a smaller passenger vehicle. The large truck rolls over the smaller car, causing potentially catastrophic injuries to its occupants.
In an underride accident, a passenger car rear-ends a large truck, wedging the smaller vehicle beneath the bed of the truck. An underride accident can also cause catastrophic injuries to passenger car occupants, including traumatic brain injuries and decapitation. Distracted driving is a common cause of rear-end collisions.
A head-on collision can occur between a large truck and a passenger car if one of the drivers falls asleep behind the wheel, is driving drunk or breaks a traffic law. For example, a truck driver dozing off while driving and crossing a median into oncoming traffic could cause a deadly head-on collision. In this case, the truck company would most likely be vicariously liable for the negligence of its driver.
Lost Cargo Load
Some commercial truck accidents in Texas involve cargo-related issues, such as cargo flying off an open-bed trailer or falling out of a closed trailer. The employee loading the cargo is responsible for preventing these risks. The failure to properly load, distribute or secure cargo could lead to severe cargo-related accidents, such as multi-vehicle pileups.
To determine who is liable for your type of truck accident in San Antonio, contact an experienced truck accident lawyer near you right away.