Collisions between a passenger vehicle and a semi-truck are often catastrophic. One of the most common semi-truck collisions are merging accidents. Semi-truck merging accidents occur frequently in the Chicago and surrounding areas as many large trucks travel through the area entering and exiting expressways to make their deliveries.
A semi-truck merging accident occurs when a vehicle is attempting to merge and does not notice a vehicle in a parallel lane or fails to leave enough room between itself and another vehicle when merging. When a semi-truck is the vehicle responsible for a merging collision the results are often deadly due to its large size. Thirty percent of fatal truck accidents nation-wide occur on interstates and freeways where merging is a common practice.
The majority of fatalities in large truck crashes are the occupants of passenger vehicles. As semi-trucks can weigh up to 20-30 times more than a passenger vehicle, the impact of a collision to the smaller vehicle will be substantial. In addition, because large trucks are much taller than passenger vehicles there is great risk a vehicle could become stuck under the truck.
If a semi-truck attempts to merge without properly checking its surroundings, there is a high possibility the vehicle will collide with another car in the parallel lane. This can result in the vehicle getting stuck under the truck, being crushed by the truck, or being forced to collide with a barrier. In addition, if the other vehicle’s driver tries to avoid the collision with the semi-truck by quickly changing lanes or slamming on his brakes other collisions can be caused.
While these accidents may seem like an innocent mistake – a driver simply missing something in a blind spot – they are the result of negligence. Because of a semi-truck’s large size more care must be taken to avoid collisions. A driver who does not properly check his or her blind spots and surroundings and causes a collision can be held liable for any and all resulting injuries.
Those who survive semi-truck merging accidents are likely to sustain very serious injuries and incur substantial medical costs. It is important that the negligent driver responsible for the collision be identified so that a victim can receive the financial compensation they deserve. In addition, if the driver works for a company that employer can be potentially held liable as well.
If the semi-truck driver is also injured in the collision, he or she may have a worker’s compensation claim. This can allow them to recover financial compensation to cover any medical costs or wages lost due to time off work.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a semi-truck merging accident it may be beneficial to discuss your options with an experienced personal injury attorney. It is important for victims to understand their rights following a collision. To schedule a free consultation with one of our Chicago personal injury lawyers, call Abels & Annes, P.C. today at 312-924-7575 or contact us online.
Prior Blog Entry:
Preventing Head-On Collisions in Chicago, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, published July 7, 2017.
Fatality Facts: Large Trucks, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute.