Commercial trucks are large and unwieldy, making them difficult to control. This becomes patently evident whenever drivers have to turn these machines right or left, especially in tight spaces. It's commonly believed truck drivers are automatically liable for any accidents that occur when they're turning, but this isn't always true? Here are few things the court will look at when determining who to hold accountable.
Were There Any Warning Signs?
Truck drivers have a responsibility to use the roadways safely, but other drivers must also be aware of what's happening in their surrounds to minimize the risk of getting into accidents. When a driver is about to make a turn, there will typically be a number of signs pointing to that fact.
For instance, the driver will typically put on the turn signal. If the turn is going to be wide, the driver may take up two lanes to provide enough room for the maneuvering. Most truck that makes wide turns will also typically have a sign on the back and/or side indicating this fact.
If all the signs were there that the truck was making a turn and you go in its way because you weren't paying enough attention, you may be found partly or fully liable for the accident. On the other hand, if the driver maneuvered recklessly—e.g. performing a button hook without signaling or ensuring the road is clear—then the driver would be found liable.
Was It Safe to Turn?
Another thing the court will consider is whether it was safe for the truck to make the turn when and how it did. For instance, it's not uncommon for trucks to cause an accident when making left turns that don't allow enough time for them to get the trailers out of the way of oncoming traffic. Other mistakes truck drivers make in this area is making right turns when traffic signs prohibit it, doing illegal U-turns, and turning when it's obvious there isn't enough room for the vehicle.
This point will often be hotly debated in court, and you'll need to be sure to bring evidence supporting your stance. Obtain any video evidence you can get your hands on showing the vehicle performing the unsafe maneuver, for instance, or have an expert testify as to why the driver's actions were problematic.
Getting compensated for damages and losses you suffer after getting into an accident with a truck often involves a lot of work and time. Be sure to contact a personal injury attorney for assistance and to find more info to improve your chances of prevailing in your case.Share
10 October 2017
My name is Noni. When I was in college, I was hit by a car while crossing the street. My life was never in danger, but I did break a few bones and had a lot of huge medical bills. I was hoping I wouldn't have to get involved with an attorney, but unfortunately, it came down to that. I used a family friend who is an accident attorney to get some compensation. A few years later, I was hit while riding my bike and had to go through the same process. I suppose I'm lucky to be alive. And it's thanks to accident attorneys that I have been able to put my life back together. I started this blog as a way to let others know just how much lawyers can help you in certain situations.