Truck accidents come in many different types, the specifics of which can affect what kind of evidence is available, who might be liable, and what approach would be most effective when pursuing compensation. These complexities are why you need the help of the experienced Georgia truck accident lawyers with Bayuk Pratt.

Our firm founders, Frank Bayuk and Bradley Pratt, have decades of combined legal experience, including as former senior partners in elite defense law firms. While there, they saw firsthand how corporations and insurance companies fought to avoid liability for accident victims’ injuries. Today, they use their insight to give clients an advantage when pursuing compensation and justice for their injuries and losses.

Ready to put our experience and tenacity to work on your case? Then contact Bayuk Pratt today for a free consultation with our Georgia truck accident attorneys.

Do Truck Drivers Cause More Accidents?

According to data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 9.3 percent of all fatal accidents in the U.S. involved a large truck, 5.6 percent involved a truck tractor, and 2.3 percent involved a single-unit truck. In contrast, 34.4 percent of fatal accidents in the U.S. involved a passenger car, and 41.9 percent involved a light truck.

According to the American Trucking Association, 3.54 million people worked as truck drivers in one recent year. Per the Federal Highway Administration, the U.S. has approximately 112 million licensed drivers. In other words, trucks are involved in a high volume of serious accidents, given how many there are on the road.

What Are the Most Common Types of Truck Accidents?

Some of the most common types of truck accidents in Georgia include:

  • Head-On Collisions – A head-on truck collision can occur when a trucker drifts over the center line or median on the highway, enters the wrong side of the road, or travels the wrong way down a one-way street or highway access ramp.
  • Rear-End Collisions – Trucks need longer stopping distances due to their higher weight. As a result, truckers are at higher risk of causing a rear-end collision when they tailgate other vehicles or engaged in distracted, drowsy, or intoxicated driving. Rear-end collisions can also occur due to brake failures.
  • Rollover Accidents – Trucks have a high center of gravity, which makes them prone to overturning in the event of an accident. This risk is exacerbated when cargo is not loaded and secured properly. Trucks can also roll over due to careless or reckless driving around a steep curve.
  • Jackknife Accidents – A truck “jackknifes” when a change in momentum between the units causes the trailer to swing forward toward the truck cab. The resulting action resembles the folding of a pocketknife. Jackknife accidents can occur due to improper braking or unsafe cargo loading.
  • Underride Accidents – An underride accident is a crash where a smaller vehicle becomes trapped underneath a truck trailer. Underride accidents can occur when a trucker tries to shift into a lane occupied by another vehicle or when a vehicle rear-ends a truck trailer.
  • Tire Blowouts – Truck tire blowouts can occur due to design/manufacturing defects, failure to replace worn or damaged tires, or overloading the truck.
  • Sideswipe Collisions – A sideswipe collision involves the side of a truck hitting the side of another vehicle. Collisions can occur when a trucker drifts out of their lane or moves into a lane already occupied by another vehicle.
  • Side-Impact/T-Bone Collisions – A T-bone accident occurs when the front of one vehicle hits the side of another. Side-impact accidents typically occur at intersections when drivers disregard traffic signs/signals or fail to yield the right of way.
  • Wide Turn Accidents – Because semi-trucks are up to 72 feet long, they have a wide turning radius as a consequence. A trucker who does not sufficiently account for this could end up turning into adjacent lanes or hopping curbs, with potentially disastrous results.

What Common Factors Contribute to Georgia Truck Accidents?

Careless mistakes are often to blame for truck accidents. Common causes or contributing factors for Georgia truck accidents include:

  • Driver Fatigue/Drowsy Driving – Truck drivers may become dangerously tired behind the wheel when they exceed their hours-of-service limits or drive late at night or early in the morning.
  • Speeding and Driving Too Fast for Conditions – Speeding means truck drivers have less time to react to an emergency and a higher risk of losing control of their vehicles. Higher speeds can also increase the force of a collision and the severity of injuries and property damage that result from it.
  • Impaired Driving – Truck drivers who use alcohol or drugs while on the road suffer from reduced decision-making ability and diminished reaction times, increasing the risk of a collision.
  • Distracted Driving – Truckers may become distracted during long hours on the road due to cell phone use, daydreaming, or eating behind the wheel.
  • Following Too Closely – Truckers must leave extra following distance to account for their vehicles’ longer stopping distances.
  • Failure to Check Blind Spots – Truck drivers are trained to manage the blind spots around their vehicle but may cause a crash when they lose track of the traffic around the truck.
  • Poor Driver Training – Truckers may cause accidents when they lack adequate training and experience with the type of vehicle they’re operating.
  • Hours of Service Violations – Driving past hour limitations puts truckers at risk of drowsy or fatigued driving.
  • Overloaded Trucks – Excessive cargo weight increases the risk of a driver losing control of their vehicle or the truck suffering a mechanical failure.
  • Improperly Secured Loads – An unsecured load can cause cargo to shift during travel, rapidly changing a truck’s weight balance and causing the driver to lose control.
  • Bad Brakes – Failure to maintain braking systems can result in a truck running off the road or colliding with another vehicle.
  • Poor Maintenance – Deferred or negligently performed truck maintenance increases the chance that the truck will suffer a mechanical problem that causes an accident.
  • Defective Roadways – Potholes, debris, and other roadway defects can cause serious mechanical issues, such as tire blowouts or suspension failures, which can lead to a crash.

How Can Truck Accidents Be Prevented?

Truckers and trucking companies can do their part in reducing accidents by taking the following steps:

  • Follow the speed limit and drive at reasonable speeds for given road, traffic, and weather conditions.
  • Learn the route ahead of time, including local roads at pickup and delivery destinations, and plan ahead to avoid hazards such as underpasses, curves, or hills.
  • Check traffic and weather reports to avoid driving in adverse conditions.
  • Conduct pre-trip inspections.
  • Follow hours-of-service rules and get plenty of sleep.
  • Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Avoid distractions while driving. Pull off the road if you need to adjust the navigation system or make a phone call.
  • Know your cargo by checking securing devices and the truck’s gross weight.

Why You Should Hire a Georgia Truck Accident Attorney

A truck accident can leave you with severe injuries that require a lengthy recovery period. Although you deserve to focus on your treatment and rehabilitation, you also need financial recovery from those responsible for the truck crash. Hiring a Georgia truck accident attorney can free you to devote your time and energy to your physical and emotional recovery, as your attorney can handle the details of your truck accident case.

When you turn to Bayuk Pratt for help after a devastating truck accident, our team will fight for the financial compensation you need by:

  • Investigating your claims to secure evidence to build a compelling case against the at-fault truck driver or trucking company
  • Documenting your injuries and losses accurately so that we pursue the financial resources you need for your recovery now and in the future
  • Identifying liable parties and evaluating your options for financial recovery, including determining the availability of insurance coverage
  • Leveraging our experience to craft tailored legal strategies to counter the insurance and trucking companies’ defense
  • Filing your claims and handling communications and negotiations with insurance adjusters, trucking company representatives, or defense lawyers
  • Keeping you updated on the progress of your case and helping you make informed decisions at each step
  • Vigorously pursuing maximum compensation for you through a settlement or by taking your case to trial, if necessary
  • Never charging you a fee for our services unless and until we recover the compensation you need