Articles Posted in Truck Accidents

California – January 18, 2023

Catastrophic damage may involve invisible injury.

Accident victims should seek medical counsel after an accident regardless of obvious personal injury.  In many cases, a person who does not believe they were injured and has no injury noted by the naked eye, may have sustained considerable damage, including brain injury, spinal injury, or other internal damage especially when involved in a truck accident as the size discrepancy may cause catastrophic damage.  Medical personnel must run diagnostic testing to determine if the accident victim has been cleared of these possible injuries.  Traumatic brain injury, concussions, or other brain conditions should be ruled out after a car accident to prevent further harmful losses  to the victim.

shutterstock_1651700782-1-300x200Commercial drivers carrying cargo are required to secure and maintain control over their truckloads. Spills can lead to cartoonish headlines and images of produce and consumer gadgets spread on a highway. But spills can also lead to injuries, and truck drivers must be held responsible.

According to a recent article, a truck spilled over 150,000 large tomatoes on Interstate 80 in California, causing shutdowns, collisions, and injuries. The truck swerved to avoid an initial collision and struck the center divider of the highway, spilling the tomatoes over the roadway. According to reports, cars drove over the tomatoes, which led to a slippery sauce across the road that spurred seven crashes.

While the image of 150,000 tomatoes spilling onto a highway to create a saucy spill is certainly comical, the damage and injuries that resulted from the driver’s carelessness are not. Seven cars crashed after the initial accident. Three people suffered minor injuries, according to reports, and a fourth required a hospital trip for a broken leg. The road was dangerous and needed to be cleaned, leading to a several-hour shutdown that hampered traffic on the major roadway.

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When trucks collide with passenger vehicles, the results can often be devastating. In fact, truck accidents remain one of the deadliest types of vehicle collisions because of the sheer force, weight, and size that trucks often have over passenger vehicles. The danger of these accidents is both in the initial impact but also in the potential injuries and property damage that often result from these crashes. In the most severe of collisions, truck accidents often result in significant physical injuries and even death.

According to a recent article, a local semi-truck accident left a van driver dead. The driver of the semi-truck rear-ended the van driver when he was stopped in one of the lanes of Highway 99. The force of the accident ejected the driver of the van from his vehicle, while the van slid into the right shoulder. The driver of the van was pronounced dead on the scene by local authorities. Initial reports from an investigation into the accident indicate that alcohol and drugs did not play a role in the crash, but police are still looking into the circumstances surrounding how the collision took place.

Truck accidents can happen to anyone, anywhere. Recent federal statistics indicate that 57 percent of fatal crashes involving large trucks occurred in rural areas, 27 percent were on interstate highways, 13 percent took place on rural interstate highways, and there were 13 fatal large truck accidents per one million people in 2017 alone.

California car accidents are complex events, and crashes involving large trucks only enhance the complexity and severity of accidents. Various elements can occur contemporaneously or hours, days, and months before an accident can result in an accident.

Some reasons may involve driver inexperience, vehicle defects, highway conditions, or weather conditions. Crash reconstruction experts generally find that accidents stem from a combination of reasons. For example, driver impairment, fatigue, and speeding are significant factors in many crashes; however, their existence alone is rarely the sole cause of an accident. Instead, a driver’s error in combination with another factor can increase the likelihood of an accident.

In combination with other agencies, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) determined that crash risk often involves three key variables: critical events, critical reasons, and associated factors. The three main types of critical events in California trucking accidents include:

shutterstock_1456160711-300x199Semi-truck or tractor-trailer accidents tend to result in the most catastrophic property damage and injury. After these incidents, California injury law allows victims and their loved ones to collect damages from any negligent party. While the negligence standard may seem straightforward, the law encompasses many complex nuances that make financial recovery a challenging process.

Damages after a California truck accident typically fall into two main categories, compensatory or punitive damages. Compensatory damages include both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are designed to address objective losses that have a dollar value. Typical economic damages include medical expenses, emergency room treatment, prescription drugs, medical supplies, lost wages, and loss of future earning capacity; non-economic damages refer to subjective non-monetary losses. Some common non-economic damages may include emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, or loss of consortium, and pain and suffering. Punitive or “exemplary” damages refer to damages designed to punish and deter the at-fault party. Courts permit these damages in a narrow subset of cases that involve malice, oppression, or fraud.

After a California trucking accident, the victim may file a claim for damages against any liable party. Some negligent parties may include the truck driver, the trucking company, or any defective truck part manufacturer. In some instances, the exact cause of an accident is unclear. For example, local news reports described a California multi-vehicle crash on the Route 15 freeway. According to Highway Patrol, a sedan with a blown-out tire was traveling slowly when a semi-truck slammed into the vehicle. The truck continued and struck a pickup truck hauling a trailer. Emergency responders transported four people to local hospitals with one critically injured person life-flighted. The Highway Patrol stated that the cause of the accident is still under investigation.

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