Some of the most tragic truck accidents in Lake Forest are caused by truck driver error. Truck drivers who are impaired by alcohol or drugs or fatigued as a result of sleep deprivation put everyone on the roadway at great risk. Truck drivers also contribute to accidents by speeding, overloading the trailer, failing to properly check or maintain the vehicle and driving aggressively or recklessly. If a negligent truck driver caused your serious injuries, please contact an experienced Lake Forest truck accident lawyer to better understand your legal rights and options.
Common Truck Driver Errors
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Large Truck Crash Causation Study, the following major driver errors were addressed.
- Driving too fast for the conditions. Often truck drivers operate at an excessive rate of speed without taking into consideration that it takes a significantly longer time to stop a large truck. A number of catastrophic rear-end truck accidents occur because truckers are unable to stop in time to avoid a collision. These types of incidents also result in chain-reaction crashes involving multiple vehicles and victims.
- Following too closely. It is against California law to follow vehicles ahead too closely. California Vehicle Code section 21703 states: "The driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of such vehicle and the traffic upon, and the condition of, the roadway." California Vehicle Code section 21704 also states that the driver "shall keep the vehicle he is driving at a distance of not less than 300 feet to the rear of any other motor vehicle subject to such speed restriction which is preceding it."
- Distracted driving. Talking on a cell phone, texting, communicating wirelessly, eating or drinking are all forms of distracted driving that can result in major injury truck accidents.
- Driver fatigue. Federal regulations specifically state the number of hours per shift a truck driver can work. Truck drivers are also required to take regular breaks and sufficient rest. A sleepy truck driver can pose significant hazards to others on the roadway.
- Drugs and alcohol: Trucking companies are required to hire drivers who do not have a history of DUI arrests. Under California law, commercial drivers cannot drive a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04 percent or higher. The legal limit is 0.08 percent for drivers of other passenger vehicles. Employers are also required under the law to randomly test their drivers.
- Jackknifing: Rollovers or truck jackknifing accidents can be caused by driving errors such as taking a curve too fast, traveling at excessive rates of speed, fatigue, inexperience or improper load distribution.
Proving Driver Errors
Some trucking companies utilize electronic event data recorders in their vehicles. These are basically devices that record a variety of information about the truck and its operation such as speed patterns, brake use and driving time. An experienced truck accident attorney will work to secure the truck’s event data recorder and other evidence such as cell phone records, driver logs and vehicle maintenance records. If these pieces of evidence are not requested promptly, they may be lost or destroyed.
Contacting an Experienced Injury Lawyer
The skilled Lake Forest truck accident lawyers at Bisnar Chase have helped numerous injured victims and their families obtain fair compensation for their injuries, damages and losses. The cost of treating serious injuries can add up quickly. You and your family should not be left paying for someone else’s mistake or negligence. We will fight hard for your rights and ensure that the at-fault parties are held liable. Please call us at 949-203-3814 for a free consultation and comprehensive case evaluation.
Immediately call an experienced and reputable Orange County Personal Injury Lawyer for a free consultation at 949-203-3814 or visit the Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys Newport Beach personal injury attorneys.