The condition of the road plays a major role in truck accidents. While a truck driver does not have control over what the road conditions are, they are expected to know how to operate their tractor trailer in such conditions.
There are several road characteristics that can be hazardous to tractor trailers such as the surface conditions, shape and contour. Road surfaces can be dangerous if they are slippery, soft, sloping, or covered with debris.
The reasons road conditions present such a threat to tractor trailers include:
- Tractor trailers travel more miles and are therefore, in more bad weather than other vehicles.
- They are less stable because of a higher center of gravity, their size and weight.
- Because of their weight, they require longer stopping distances.
Wet weather conditions contribute greatly to truck accidents. The road surface may be more slippery than it appears. Just after it starts to rain, patches of oil dripped from other vehicles is very slippery. Construction plates, railroad tracks and paint-striped areas can also be a factor to slippery road conditions.
In cold weather conditions black ice, bridges and shaded areas can present problems. Black ice refers to a thin coating of glazed ice on a road surface. It is virtually transparent and thus difficult to see as compared to snow, frozen slush or thicker layers of ice.
There were over 500,000 accidents involving large trucks and commercial vehicles in 2010. Large Truck Accidents are particularly horrible since the trucks are bigger and heavier than most vehicles on the road. Commercial truck drivers can be negligent, overworked, under-trained, or just victim to mechanical failure. When road conditions are hazardous, these other factors are amplified and make them much more dangerous to other vehicles on the road.
At the Law Office of James M. Hoffmann, our St. Louis truck accident lawyers will fight to make sure that the trucking company is held responsible for their failure. If a truckers reckless driving has resulted in the death of your loved one, trust our firm to help. Call us at (314) 361-4300 for a free and private consultation. You may also request free consultation by completing our on-line contact form.
photo credit: Zyan