What’s the Difference Between an 18-Wheeler Collision and a Car Accident?

Car Accident

Being involved in any road traffic accident can be scary, but it’s even more terrifying to be involved in a collision with a large 18-wheeler vehicle, especially if you are riding in a standard passenger vehicle at the time. The size difference between vehicles alone is enough to be seriously frightening and dangerous to anybody traveling in a standard car, since serious injuries and death are common results with these types of accidents. Big trucks that lose control can also do much more damage than simply colliding with one vehicle – in this situation, they will commonly collide with several different vehicles and spill debris onto the road, which can lead to even more accidents.

Why Are Big Vehicle Accidents More Dangerous?

Along with the size difference and the fact that large vehicles are more likely to collide with multiple cars on the road, they can be especially dangerous when carrying certain cargo. For example, tankers can be extremely dangerous in an accident since they are carrying harmful chemicals, which can often lead to injury of innocent pedestrians and bystanders along with the drivers and passengers of other vehicles on the road. 18 wheeler truck accident attorneys can help if you have been involved in this type of accident.

Safety Differences

One of the main differences between 18-wheeler and car safety is that large trucks should be inspected and maintained on a regular basis by, not just their drivers, but also the shipping companies that own them, according to rules and regulations from the Department of Transportation and Federal Motor Vehicle Association. When these rules are not adhered to by the driver or the company, the risk of the truck being involved in a dangerous collision becomes greater.

Multiple Responsible Parties

Another main difference between 18-wheeler and car accidents is that unlike car accidents where it’s commonly the driver who is responsible for the crash, there can be multiple negligent actors in the event of a collision with a large vehicle. In some cases, the driver of the large vehicle may not be held liable for the accident at all if it can be proven that their employer acted in a negligent manner or caused the collision through actions such as not performing the appropriate safety checks or making the driver continue working if they were distracted or fatigued. In addition, an 18-wheeler truck accident is often more likely to lead to a product liability claim where the manufacturer of the vehicle may be held responsible if the collision was the result of mechanical failure of the vehicle.

Larger Damage Potential

Finally, claim damages from 18-wheeler truck accidents can often be much larger compared to car accident damages since they can include both compensatory and punitive damages if multiple parties can be held responsible for the collision including the truck driver, trucking company and vehicle manufacturer. Federal regulations require that truck operators carry no less than $1m liability and general business insurance protection.

Any road accident can be dangerous, but colliding with or being involved in an accident with a large vehicle can be even more serious.

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