Truck Accident | Phoenix Personal Injury Law Blog
Self-driving vehicles may sound like an idea for the distant future, but that science fiction has already started to become a reality. Just as there has been a push to get self-driving cars road-ready, there has also been a push to get self-driving commercial trucks on the roadways as well.
Considering how much more dangerous big rigs are than sedans, you may expect that it would be several more years before self-driving trucks really hit the market, but what you may not realize is that these driverless trucks are already in use.
We have all seen a fully loaded semi-truck on the I-10 and clenched up every time we had to pass one. These vehicles are extremely powerful, heavy, and often carry dangerous materials, which is why trucking accidents are so devastating. However, it may surprise you to know that empty trucks are often just as dangerous as ones that are overloaded.
There was once a time where the average delivery took a week or more unless you were willing to pay an arm or a leg for overnight shipping. Now though, two-day delivery seems to rule our world. You can order a dress on Thursday and wear it out with your friends on Saturday. That level of convenience has made many of our lives a lot easier, but it has also made our roads much more dangerous.
The trucker shortage, which has been increasing over the past several years, has begun to reach critical numbers. The American Trucking Association (ATA) recently announced that there would be a shortage of an estimated 175,000 truck drivers by the year 2026. Truck transportation is the backbone of our country’s economy, and a shortage of willing drivers could impact the prices of goods, as well as the cost of shipping packages. Even scarier, however, is that fewer truckers mean that the ones trucking companies do manage to employ may become a danger to everyone on roadways.
We all hear about fatal auto accidents on the news, and it often makes us wonder – is the number of accidents getting better or worse? Are all the laws on texting and driving, additional enforcement of drinking and driving, and other safety measures making a difference? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the answer is a complicated yes – fatalities from automobile accidents are decreasing with a 2.4% reduction in 2018.
Any large truck wreck can have catastrophic consequences for all the people (and vehicles) involved. When the truck is a tanker trunk, however, there are unique hazards that can cause worse injuries to the victims.
Three trucks were involved in a fatal crash on April 17, 2018, near Tonopah, Arizona. One semi-truck rolled over on I-10 near milepost 79, causing two other trucks behind it to collide. The driver of the third truck died because of the impact, which pushed the second truck into the first and caused injuries to the other drivers. Roads were closed for several hours while emergency responders attended to the victims and crews cleaned up debris.
A recent crash involving five people and one transport truck on 59th Avenue and Lower Buckeye Road has highlighted just how dangerous accidents involving trucks can be. But it wasn’t the only truck crash around that time, nor is it likely to be the last one this year in Arizona!
The simple answer is yes, you should absolutely have a lawyer to represent you when dealing with a commercial truck business and its insurance company. Both the trucking business and the insurance company are intent on making money, which means paying as little as possible to you. Even your own insurance company is, ultimately, going to make every effort to pay as little money as it can to anyone involved in a crash. After any accident, no matter who was at fault, contact an experienced Phoenix-area personal injury lawyer to represent you and protect your rights.
Sharing the road with large trucks is pretty common around Phoenix, especially on the freeways and between cities like Prescott, Flagstaff, and Tucson. Driving around these big vehicles can be perfectly safe as long as you keep a few simple things in mind and make sure to always practice general safe driving procedures. You should always fasten your seat belt, obey speed limits and posted signs with traffic instructions, and never use your phone or become distracted by passengers and events outside the vehicle.
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Confidentially reviewed by Attorney Mark Breyer