As global industries rebound from the production lull of 2020, many cannot keep adequate supply to match rising demand rates and subsequent price increases. The transportation and trucking industries are no exception.
Fueled by a massive surge in online shopping, this year trucking companies in the U.S. have seen record-breaking costs for new and used trucks. Increasing need for items to be shipped across regions with quick turnaround times has created major demand for companies to obtain more semi-trucks. The market has responded with shockingly high numbers. Freight Waves attests that prices for commercial trucks are up 85.8% compared to the first six months of 2020. It’s a seller’s market out there – for homeowners, used car sellers, and certainly for those auctioning used semi-trucks.
For the first time in nearly 20 years, ACT Research reported that three-year-old trucks with up to 400,000 miles broke into six-figure prices. With prices at an all-time high in the used truck market, transportation companies are looking to cut costs wherever possible. What does this all mean for those of us sharing the roadways?
Why can aging trucks be unsafe?
Soaring prices for newer models inevitably result in buyers settling for and continuing to operate older used vehicles. Just like used cars, the older the truck model and the longer it operates, the more risky it becomes for the driver and others on the road. Compared to newer models, older semis lack enhanced safety technologies. Other factors like neglected upkeep on maintenance and higher mileage also pose increased risks.
A huge element when discussing roadway safety is vehicle weight. When it comes to a semi-truck versus your family’s SUV, there can be a 75,000 pound difference. Legally, semis can carry up to a total of 40 tons and span 80 feet. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that on average, these trucks need 40% more time to come to a complete stop than passenger vehicles. If a collision occurs between a semi-truck and your personal vehicle, the odds are not in your favor.
What are the most frequent truck crash types?
Such large and heavy vehicles pose serious risks to personal vehicles on the road. Although extended training is required for truckers to operate commercial semis, collisions still occur. When these accidents happen, they can cause serious consequences. Common semi-truck accidents include:
- Head-on and rear-end collisions
- Jackknife accidents
- Blind spot accidents
- Roll-over accidents
- Underride accidents
- Tire blowouts
Undoubtedly, many of these may have a lot to do with driver errors such as distracted driving, fatigue, and driving over the speed limit. More so, traffic violations, lack of experience and training, or a single poor decision on the road may be the catalyst to one of these accidents. Limitations posed by older vehicles may be harder to pinpoint, but still play a factor. Inadequate equipment, parts, and lack of safety technologies may pose an increased risk for one of these common crash incidents.
What are some common injuries from truck accidents?
Accidents involving a commercial truck and a personal vehicle can cause a slew of damages to one’s property and, in many cases, involve serious personal injury. Additionally, drivers operating personal vehicles are at much higher risk of serious harm than truck drivers themselves. Again, this is due to the large weight and length incongruity. Common physical injuries caused by truck accidents include:
- Broken and fractured bones
- Burn injuries
- Internal injuries
- Loss of limb injuries
- Neck, back, and shoulder injuries
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Soft tissue injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
Along with physical damages, the repercussions of a truck collision may come in the form of lost wages, inability to return to work, high cost of medical bills, long-term disability, and more.
When it comes to a truck crash, who is liable?
One of the main components that sets trucking accidents apart from other automobile accidents is determining the liable party. There may be several liable parties when it comes to a semi-truck crash. Most obvious may be the driver, but the trucking company or owner of the vehicle may be held responsible as well.
Other liable parties may include those responsible for loading the truck, maintaining and repairing the vehicle, the parts manufacturer, the leasing company, the truck manufacturer, or the broker who hired the trucking company for deliveries. Determining liability in a case with this many possibilities is no simple task. That is why an experienced St. Louis truck accident lawyer may be crucial to a successful case.
How can a St. Louis truck accident attorney help?
If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident, you may be up against a large team when it comes to obtaining justice for your damages. Commercial trucking companies are well-equipped with legal support and partnering insurance firms aiming to mitigate their liability in a given case. This is why you want an experienced attorney on your side who will advocate for your rights.
Commercial truck crashes pose lots of complexities for personal injury cases because of federal, state, and insurance specific regulations pertaining to the industry. At The Hayden Law Firm, our experienced team will help navigate the timeline for collecting evidence and utilize our resource network to retain valuable records and expert assistance. When it comes to seeking justice for your injuries, hire a dedicated attorney to tackle your case with the resources and experience required to win.
If have suffered injuries from a collision with a commercial truck, The Hayden Law Firm is here to advocate for you and achieve justice for your case. We work to secure fair and just financial compensation for your damages, in the form of injuries, property damage, and long-term losses. Please call our offices at 314-207-5492 or fill out our contact form for a free consultation. We proudly serve clients in St. Louis, and throughout Missouri and Illinois.
Attorney Amanda L. Hayden has dedicated her legal career to fearlessly advocating for clients and their families after their lives have been devastated by the careless and/or reckless conduct of others.
Read more about Amanda L. Hayden