Commercial truck accidents are among the most dangerous types of accidents that can occur on the road. It’s easy to see why. These vehicles weigh about 35,000 pounds when they’re empty, and if anyone other than a fully trained driver is behind the wheel, trouble can ensue for the truck and any nearby motorists. Their vehicles can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, which is a stark contrast to the average passenger vehicle of 3,000 to 5,000 pounds.
Driving a tractor-trailer is different from driving a normal-sized private vehicle. A truck’s size and weight make it cumbersome and slow to turn and change lanes. Commercial drivers are considered professional drivers because of the training that is required for them to be licensed.
This is why it is so important for trucking companies to train their drivers fully upon hiring them. One failure to stop or other mistake on the road could mean the difference between life and death, again, for the truckers and those who share the road with them.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, and you suspect an improperly trained driver was the cause, you may have a personal injury case. In reality, improper training is most often discovered after a serious crash has occurred and our attorneys gather evidence and information during the investigation.
If you are injured in a truck crash, you probably will not know at the scene that a driver was improperly trained or hired. Call The Cagle Law Firm to speak to a negligent truck driver lawyer in St. Louis, MO. We will investigate your situation to determine if you are entitled to financial compensation.
Why Some Truck Drivers Are Improperly Trained
Improperly trained truck drivers pose a nearly constant threat to other motorists because of the way the trucking industry is in the United States. Many trucking companies experience high rates of driver turnover. This can be due to reasons such as low pay, drivers not getting enough miles, and drivers disliking being away from home for so long.
As a result, some drivers leave for other opportunities, sometimes within just a few months or a year. This sudden loss of drivers means the trucking company needs new employees in the doors, and quickly. When the companies get new drivers, they may send them for only partial training before putting them out on the road, since they need to make up for lost time shipping their goods. While transportation companies may not ultimately be responsible for the beginning training of a driver, they are responsible for researching the driver’s performance and successful completion of a professional training program.
Whether it is a question of shortage of staff or failure to probably vet drivers, improperly trained drivers can make it onto the roadways.
Types of Truck Accidents Caused by Improperly Trained Drivers
A truck driver who has little experience driving a tractor-trailer before might struggle to operate the vehicle. The sheer size of a commercial truck makes it slow and difficult to move. Trained drivers learn to safely maneuver these large vehicles, change lanes safely, avoid dangerous maneuvers, and maintain appropriate speeds for conditions.
Accidents can result when an improperly trained driver fails to:
- Judge the correct stopping distance
- Allow for the correct turning distance
- Allow for blind spots when changing lanes or turning
- Avoid maneuvers that could cause jackknife accidents
- Turn with the proper speed to avoid rollovers
It is easy to see how any of these accidents can injure both the truck driver and any motorists near the truck. A truck rear-ending or turning into a small car or pushing one off the road as it changes lanes can cause serious injuries or even death.
All truck drivers should be familiar with the federal trucking regulations that govern how much a truck driver can drive on a shift. Long shifts can allow fatigue to set in, making it more likely that they will cause one of the above accidents.
Get Help from a Negligent Truck Driver Lawyer in St. Louis, MO
If you have been injured in a truck accident, The Cagle Law Firm wants to hear from you. We will investigate your case to be sure that the driver and transportation company were operating according to the regulations, including safe hiring and training practices. We will fight on your behalf for the help you need to get your life back on track.
Many insurance companies will try to settle with you for a lowball amount, but our personal injury attorneys will work until you are paid a fair amount for what you have suffered.
If you have been hurt, contact The Cagle Law Firm now. You can call toll-free at (1-800) 685-3302 or locally at (314) 276-1681 to speak to a truck accident attorney who can help you collect the compensation you deserve.