Truck Accidents Cause Roughly 130,000 Injuries Each Year. Sadly, most of these accidents were not truly accidents. They were crashes that resulted from driver negligence of many types.
Speeding is one type of negligence that leads to truck accident injuries and fatalities. If you were recently injured or someone you love was killed in a big rig crash, reach out to our compassionate truck accident lawyers. They can review your case and inform you of your options.
How Speeding Leads to Truck Wrecks
Speeding can contribute to or be the sole cause of a truck accident for multiple reasons. Tragic crashes occur involving big rigs because of speeding:
- Decreases the ability to stop: At higher speeds, trucks need more time, and thus distance, to slow down and stop than smaller vehicles do.
- Has more profound risks in bad weather: If rain, snow, ice, or fog is present, speeding becomes even more dangerous. Truckers who are driving at or under the speed limit can even pose problems during poor weather conditions. They need to adjust their speed based on weather, road, and traffic conditions. Not doing so is negligence.
- Large loads compound the risks: No matter the type of load the truck driver is hauling, it can shift during the journey and makes it more difficult for drivers to maneuver their trucks safely. Combined with speeding, these loads can cause a rollover or jackknife accident.
- Dangerous around curves: Deadly crashes occur when truck drivers do not slow down when navigating curves in the road.
- Leads to a loss of control: When a truck driver is faced with the need to stop or slow down suddenly, they are more likely to lose control of their vehicle when traveling at higher speeds.
Truck drivers are commercial drivers who are responsible for safely accommodating the conditions on the road – whatever they may be. This includes driving at a safe speed that takes such conditions into account. When a trucker drives too fast for the road’s condition and other variables that affect safe travel, that trucker significantly increases the risk that a dangerous accident will ensue.
Increased Stopping Distances
The immense semis with which we share our roads require far longer stopping distances than do the cars we drive, and the faster the trucker is traveling, the more distance he or she needs. When a truck driver fails to accommodate for this increased stopping distance, the traffic ahead can pay the tremendous price of having an 80,000-pound fully-loaded semi slam into them if a sudden stop or slow down becomes necessary.
Slow Down for Curves and Exits
Trucks are massive vehicles that are not only much heavier than the cars we drive but are also top-heavy and far more prone to rollovers when not operated with the necessary professional skill and care. When big rigs take curves and exits, physics dictates that they must slow down considerably to ensure that they don’t rollover. When truck drivers fail to slow their rigs adequately and in plenty of time to take such curves and exits, life-threatening rollover accidents can be the result.
Factor in the Weather
Truck drivers – just like all other drivers – are responsible for factoring in how the weather is affecting the condition of the road ahead, and the effects of weather can be even more significant for semis than for the much lower-profile vehicles that we drive. All of the following weather-related conditions demand a significant decrease in a trucker’s speed in order to proceed safely:
- High winds
- Debris-strewn roads, such as roads that are plastered with leaves or branches after a storm
- The speed limit, it’s worth noting, assumes driving conditions are ideal.