MN LAWYER FOR INJURED IN CAR ACCIDENT WITH TRUCK OR SEMI TRACTOR
A tractor trailer accident often results in very serious damage and injury for one simple reason: a semi-truck is really big and heavy. Nationwide, large trucks (known as semi trucks, tractor trailers, eighteen wheelers, diesels, or big rigs) make up about 3% of the vehicles on the road. However, the odds of being killed in a car accident where a semi truck or tractor trailer is involved are far higher.
Our Minnesota semi-truck accident attorneys have been successfully represented people injured in a car accident hit by a truck for more than 25 years. Sometimes the car is hit by a semi or rear ended, and sometimes the crash is caused because the truck jack knifed or the truck rolled over. We have found that these tragic accidents almost always could have been prevented with better driver training and following of the truck driving safety rules.
Common causes of semi-truck accidents in Minnesota include: Poor Driver Training – Driver Fatigue (Tiredness) – Speeding – Overloaded Trucks – Oversized Trucks – Brake Failure – Poor Driving Conditions – Driver Inexperience – Failure To Yield The Right-Of-Way – Driving Under The Influence of Alcohol Or Drugs – Aggressive, Dangerous Or Reckless Driving – Mechanical Failure (Or Improper Maintenance) – Defective Parts (Such As Defective Steering Or Brakes). Truckers and trucking companies must be mindful of each of these trucking accident causes.
Driver fatigue is a particularly dangerous — and completely preventable — cause of truck accidents, and one that our best MN attorneys see frequently in our cases. Nearly 15 years ago, the NTSB issued a report warning of truck driver fatigue dangers. The NTSB found that trucker fatigue was a contributing factor in 30%-40% of all diesel truck accidents. The NTSB found that proper sleep patterns are imperative for truck driver safety. Truckers must get 8 hours of continuous sleep after driving for 10 hours or after being on duty for 15 hours for proper safety. The NTSB just recently issued a warning that truck drivers should also be screened for a medical condition called sleep apnea. Sleep apnea denies people the rest they need, and it has been found to be a factor in incidents involving every transportation mode. Driver fatigue is often a contributing factor in head on collisions and rear end accidents caused by trucks.
Here are some suggestions from a MN truck accident lawyer to protect yourself from a semi truck crash while you are driving your car.
- Do not “tailgate” behind a big rig. Remember, if you cannot see the mirrors on the tractor’s cab then the truck driver cannot see you. You also need to give yourself plenty of time to stop your own vehicle if there is an emergency ahead.
- Always use caution around a semi truck. Semi trucks can weigh more than 80,000 pounds and are not as agile as your passenger vehicle. It can be difficult for a semi to stop or swerve to avoid a collision with a car.
- Do not “cut off” a tractor trailer in your car. Aggressive driving may distract or catch a truck driver off guard. Such driving also reduces the available stopping distance for the tractor trailer in the event of an emergency.
Investigation To Determine The Cause Of A Truck Accident – MN Attorney
With some accidents, it can be difficult to determine the cause of a semi-truck crash even where the truck hit the auto. It takes an experienced team of investigators to determine the cause of a truck car accident. As a starting point, the Minnesota State Patrol sends an investigator to evaluate the semi-truck and driver after almost every semi tractor accident in MN. In many cases, particularly if there are serious injuries, the MN State Patrol will also send an accident reconstructionist. An accident reconstructionist will measure physical evidence like skid marks and debris, and photograph the collision site. They will use these measurements and their engineering knowledge to calculate the speed of the vehicles involved in the collision, the impact forces, and the way the vehicles moved after impact. The accident reconstructionist can determine if a vehicle was speeding or failed to yield the right-of-way. He or she can also determine if the vehicle could have been slowed or stopped to avoid the collision.
Our lawyers also work with truck driving (or trucking) experts to determine if either the truck driver and/or the trucking company acted improperly or were negligent. The best attorneys for a car hit by a semi will ask the expert to examine the driver logs, gas receipts, schedule, manifest, GPS and onboard data information, and other available information to determine if the truck driver or trucking company violated regulations, industry standards or company standards. Our semi-truck accident injury attorneys also examine these documents to determine how and why the accident happened. In addition, our car accident with truck lawyer will frequently use our own MN investigators and reconstructionists where the Minnesota State Patrol investigation was not conclusive.
If you are injured in a car after being hit by a truck or semi tractor trailer, call our top Minnesota attorneys for a free consultation. Pam Rochlin and David Rochlin are Minnesota personal injury lawyers with more than 25 years of experience successfully representing people injured in car and truck accident injury crashes, including cases where a family member is killed because of a semi truck. A truck car accident lawyer will discuss your case with you and explain your rights. We are also happy to meet with you at our office or your home. Our Minnesota truck semi tractor accident lawyers will meet with you to discuss your case and injuries at our offices in Minneapolis MN, St. Louis Park, Woodbury, and Edina. Our lawyers also frequently meet with people after a car accident with a semi truck to discuss cases at their homes in St. Paul, Chanhassen, Chaska, Eden Prairie, Maple Grove, Rogers, Brooklyn Park, Forest Lake, Burnsville, Rogers, Apple Valley, Roseville, Maplewood, and other surrounding cities in Minnesota. There is no obligation on your part, and we always only charge a percentage of what we collect for you.