The Characteristics of a Truck That Make It Deadly in Accidents

Characteristics of a Truck That Make It Deadly in Accidents

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Trucks carry heavy loads over long distances. Due to their size and weight, they also present serious risks to other road users. They can cause deadly collisions, affecting not only other vehicles but also pedestrians and cyclists.

With the increasing number of trucks on the road, it is vital to understand the characteristics that make them deadly.

Remember to get the help of skilled truck accident lawyers who can help you if you or your loved one has been involved in a truck accident.

This post discusses the factors that make trucks dangerous on the roads and the steps you can take to protect yourself on the road.


1. Size and Weight

Trucks’ sheer size and weight are their most noticeable features. Commercial vehicles are enormous compared to other cars on the road, weighing up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded.

Such a large object can exert a tremendous amount of force in a collision, frequently leading to severe injuries or fatalities, especially for the occupants of smaller vehicles.


2. High Ground Clearance

Trucks typically have a higher ground clearance than cars, which can exacerbate the impact of a collision. A truck’s higher center of gravity makes it more likely for a smaller vehicle to slide underneath the car in a crash, a situation known as an underride accident.

In 2022, there were 5,370 truck accident deaths. 72% of fatalities are from other vehicles, with the occupants of the massive truck accounting for 17% of the total.

These accidents are often deadly, as the impact directly targets the occupants’ head and upper body areas.


3. Limited Maneuverability

Trucks have limited maneuverability due to their size and weight, especially at high speeds or tight spaces. Because of this, it may be difficult for truck drivers to avoid roadblocks or respond swiftly to abrupt changes in traffic circumstances.

As a result, trucks may be involved in accidents where they collide with other vehicles or run off the road, causing significant damage and injuries.


4. Longer Stopping Distances

Trucks require longer distances than smaller vehicles to come to a complete stop. Factors such as speed, road conditions, and the weight of the cargo can further increase stopping distances for trucks.

This poses a significant risk, especially when sudden braking is necessary to avoid a collision. Drivers of smaller vehicles may not anticipate the extended stopping distance of trucks, leading to rear-end collisions or other accidents.


5. Blind Spots

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Trucks have large blind spots or areas around the vehicle where the driver’s view is obstructed. These blind spots, also known as “no-zones,” are particularly significant on the sides and rear of the truck.

Vehicles traveling in these areas may not be visible to the truck driver, increasing the risk of collisions, especially during lane changes or turns. All road users must be cautious when near huge trucks because pedestrians and bicycles may find themselves in the car’s blind spot.


6. Cargo Shifts and Spills

Improperly secured cargo or sudden shifts in load distribution can cause trucks to lose control or overturn, leading to accidents with devastating consequences. Cargo spills pose a risk to other vehicles on the road and create hazardous conditions that can lead to secondary accidents or environmental damage.


7. Driver Fatigue and Distraction

Truck drivers may become weary and distracted due to long hours on the road, strict deadlines, and cramped schedules.

Fatigued or distracted drivers are more prone to making errors in judgment or reaction, increasing the likelihood of accidents.

The consequences of truck accidents can be magnified when driver negligence or impairment is a contributing factor.


Final Thoughts

The characteristics inherent to trucks make them formidable vehicles on the road, capable of transporting goods efficiently over long distances. However, these same characteristics also make trucks deadly in accidents, posing significant risks to other road users.

Addressing these risks requires a multifaceted approach involving improved vehicle technology, enhanced driver training, and stricter safety regulations. We can create safer roads for everyone if we know the particular difficulties that trucks present.






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