The underlying Causes of the Rising Number of Devastating Texas Trucking Accidents
The past twenty years have seen a dangerous spike in trucking accidents; indeed, the number of casualties and collisions related to the trucking industry has risen about 20% compared to the last two decades per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. In instances where commercial trucks cause an accident on Texas roadways, including the Central Texas and San Antonio region, the outcome is typically much more severe than accidents involving only smaller, passenger sedans.
This is because a truck of this magnitude is typically about 20 times the size and dimension of other automobiles. As more data is collected and these types of accidents are aggregated to indicate patterns, a few recurrent variables continue to resurface as one of the underlying causes of the rising number of devastating Texas trucking accidents. The most common of these underlying causes of the rising number of devastating Texas trucking accidents are:
- Driver error
- Truck equipment/structure failure/malfunction
- Threatening weather conditions
- Improper/negligent loading/unloading
- Negligent/careless selection of drivers/companies
According to the FMCSA’s statistics, driver error is ten times more likely to be the cause of the crash than any other factors that bring about trucking accidents. Driver fatigue, negligence, distraction, under-qualification, and substance abuse are the most common causes of driver error that may turn into your misfortune.Equipment Failure
The second most common cause of accident involving commercial trucks and 18 wheelers is equipment failure. Mechanical breakdowns can include design and/or manufacturing errors such as tire defects or failure to provide proper reverse-detection warning instruments. Equipment failures can include other mechanical issues such as improperly maintained brakes, tires, or other supplemental parts.Dangerous Weather Conditions
Another one of the underlying causes of the rising number of devastating Texas trucking accidents that can have a major impact on the safety of commercial vehicles are any dangerous or threatening weather conditions on the roads at the same time as a vehicle of this size.
When, for example, heavy rains cause a layer of slickness on the road, the necessary time required for a truck of this to stop increases dramatically, especially trucks hauling thousands of pounds of products in a single shipment. Unlike smaller passenger cars, larger trucks cannot be stopped as quickly or maneuvered as effortlessly. The operators of these commercial-sized vehicles often do not take this into account when they climb behind the wheel; this can lead to potentially fatal accidents. In fact, almost 15% of all trucking accidents occur due to dangerous weather conditions.Improper Loading
Because Texas is centralized and the second largest state in the country, as well as the largest in the lower 48 – and not to mention the vast amount of goods, imports, and exports shipped through the state each year – large-sized vehicles like commercial semi-trucks and 18-wheelers will always remain a fixture on Texas roads and highways. This includes Central Texas, the Hill Country, and the San Antonio and South Texas area, where a key stretch of I-35 connects the north and south regions of the state.
Another factor not to be ignored where commercial trucking casualties are concerned is the improper, negligent, or unsafe loading of a truck’s cargo. When the load behind the truck’s cab is not safely configure or distributed, or there is any issue with the placement and positioning of the cargo on the trailer bed, the load itself can actually cause the truck to malfunction or fail during transport, thus presenting potential danger to other vehicles.
A common type of improper loading circumstance is an ‘imbalanced load’, which could cause the truck to literally topple over. Improper loading can also pose a problem in terms of the cargo not being appropriately secured. The goods can then fall or fly off the back of the trailer and onto the roadways, into the traffic lanes, or even directly onto other cars.Negligent Selection of Drivers by Companies
Finally, a growing cause of trucking accidents in Texas is negligence in the selection and hiring process for truck drivers by commercial trucking companies and corporations. All too often, these companies are more concerned with prompt deliveries and delivery schedule punctuality; in some cases, more concerned with these logistics than properly screening or researching employees and drivers before they hire them to transport goods across Texas and the country in commercial trucks.
Additionally, companies who hire these vendors will often hastily hire a trucking company to take care of the transport of their product, before looking into the safety and regulatory upkeep of these companies’ trucks and workers.
The San Antonio trucking lawyers at Carabin & Shaw are a group of highly trained attorneys, who understand the nuances of gathering evidence in order to conduct a successful court case regarding individual cases of semi-truck accidents and 18-wheeler accidents, and research the specific details of each claim in order to ensure that responsibility for the accident and injuries in question fall on the responsible party or parties.
If you or someone you care about has been affected by a semi-truck accident in the area in and around San Antonio, you deserve the aid of an experienced and knowledgeable attorney to ensure you receive the recompense which you are owed. Call our lawyers for a free consultation. We are here to handle all the details surrounding your particular case and claim.The preliminary inquiry with our firm is free. The details discussion is free. The confident consultation is free.
Contact a San Antonio trucking accident lawyer at Carabin & Shaw at 210.222.2288, or call us toll free, day or night, at 1.800.862.120. We even have bilingual lawyers ready to assist you if Spanish is your first language, in order to avoid any language confusion regarding your claim.