Motor vehicle accidents involving commercial trucks tend to be more serious than other crashes simply because of the size and weight of the trucks. It was reported that there were 475,000 truck accidents during 2016 alone, in Tennessee and across the country. The causes of commercial truck accidents may include driver negligence, improper truck maintenance or other factors.
Jackknifing on the road
One of the most dangerous types of semi crash involves what is referred to as jackknifing. This occurs when the trailer, instead of following behind the truck, skids up sideways to a 90-degree angle behind the truck. The cause of a jackknife could be locked axle brakes, driver error or poor road conditions. Jackknifing can also lead to a rollover.
Truck rollover accidents
In rollover truck accidents, the truck and trailer come off of their wheels and roll. A rollover can occur due to high-speed travel, steep hills, turning too quickly or other factors. A truck rollover can wreck other cars on the road or cause a multi-vehicle accident.
Impaired driving accidents
Commercial truck drivers are subject to state and federal laws regarding impairment. They can only drive for certain lengths of time to avoid fatigued driving, for example, and drug and alcohol testing is mandatory in some circumstances after truck crashes. However, impaired driving is still a common cause of truck accidents.
Underride and rear-end crashes
Because commercial trucks are bigger and ride much higher than other vehicles, in some collisions the other car can go under the truck or the trailer. The injuries in these accidents are usually very serious. Large trucks also stop more slowly than smaller vehicles. If a truck is forced to attempt to stop too quickly, it might rear-end another vehicle which can cause whiplash or other bodily injuries.
Any of these types of truck accidents can occur at any time. Awareness of the common types of crashes can increase the level of safety on the highway.