Truck Accidents vs. Car Accidents

Truck accidents are similar to car accidents in that the two types of accidents may cause injuries and damage. Truck accident lawsuits and car accident lawsuits both attempt to recover compensation for victims that have been injured or killed through personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits. However, truck accidents differ from car accidents in many important ways. When pursuing a lawsuit following a trucking accident, victims may benefit greatly from hiring a lawyer than has experience with truck accident lawsuits.

Differences in Accident Severity

Trucks generally weigh about 25 times as much cars. This disparity in weight makes the likelihood of severe injuries or fatalities much higher in a truck accident than in a car accident. Truck accidents may also damage several vehicles or cause multiple collisions. In addition to the dangers posed by the size and weight of the truck, the severity of truck accidents can be worsened by freight spills.

Differences in Accident Details

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately 50 times the number of people were injured or killed in car accidents than truck accidents in 2011. Approximately 24 percent of car accident fatalities involved alcohol as a factor, compared with one percent of truck accident fatalities.

Differences in Risk Factors

The size and proportions of large trucks alter the risk factors inherent in driving a truck versus a car. Risk factors for truck drivers include large blind spots, dangers associated with taking sharp turns, and dangers associated with freight balancing on hills. A trucking company may also be held liable for a driver’s inability to properly anticipate and respond to these risk factors, which would not be a consideration in a car accident. Truck drivers must also be aware of the risk factors and regulations associated with driving for many hours in succession, which is also not a consideration in car accident lawsuits.

Differences in Lawsuits

While both truck accident victims and car accident victims must prove negligence when pursuing legal action, the type of negligence may be very different. Car accident victims must prove the negligence of the car driver or a faulty vehicle manufacturer through the use of documentation such as an accident report. Truck accident victims may need to prove the negligence of the trucking company, the driver, the vehicle manufacturer, or even the manufacturer of the cargo. Acquiring the evidence necessary to successfully prosecute a trucking company can become much more complicated than prosecuting a car driver.




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“Relative Contribution/Fault in Car-Truck Crashes.” American Trucking Association. American Trucking Association, 1 Feb. 2013. Web. 13 Sept. 2014. < Docs/News and Information/Reports Trends and Statistics/02 12 13 — FINAL 2013 Car-Truck Fault Paper.pdf>