Articles Posted in Truck Accidents

Alcohol-impaired drivers are a major cause of car accidents throughout the country. Impaired drivers are extremely dangerous on the roads for a whole host of reasons. Drivers impaired by alcohol or other substances suffer from reduced levels of concentration and slower reaction times when processing their surroundings and actions. Additionally, drunk drivers suffer from poor hand-eye coordination and they are more likely to use poor judgment and experience memory loss while under the influence. These factors and other side effects of substance use greatly increase the likelihood of impaired drivers being involved in car accidents. Signs of impaired drivers on the road include but aren’t limited to, quicker than usual acceleration or deceleration, weaving across the road, erratic breaking, slow responses to traffic signals, or excessively slow driving (10 mph below the speed limit). When on the road, you should exercise extreme caution if you spot any of these signs from other drivers. In 2016, Maryland implemented stricter drunk driving laws throughout the state, including harsher penalties and an Ignition Interlock Program.

How Common Are Maryland DUI Accidents?

Unfortunately, Maryland sees a high share of alcohol-impaired drivers. Over the last five years, almost 800 people in Maryland have been killed in crashes involving impaired drivers and over 10,000 people per year die throughout the United States in alcohol-impaired crashes. Each year, tens of thousands of people are arrested throughout Maryland for drunk or impaired driving. Maryland currently deploys a specialized team of Maryland State troopers assigned to the State Police Impaired Driving Reduction Effort (SPIDRE) to enforce impaired driving laws. Since 2013, State Troopers in SPIDRE have taken more than 4,000 impaired drivers off of Maryland roads. A recent news report detailed a fatal Maryland car crash.

According to the news report, the fatal accident occurred in the early morning on Tuesday, October 31, when a Hyundai Accent traveling East on the East West Highway at Morse Road in the Jarrettsville area crashed head-on into a Nissan work van. State police said the driver of the Hyundai Accent died at the scene. The 51-year-old driver of the Nissan work van involved in the crash was taken to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center in Baltimore. The preliminary investigation indicates that the Hyundai was traveling quickly on the East West Highway, passing multiple vehicles in a passing zone. At the same time, the van was traveling west and the vehicles collided head-on. The cause of the crash remains under investigation, police said. The road was closed for about three hours.

In 2022, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics recorded nearly 25,000 highway accidents involving hazardous materials that led to injuries, deaths, and property damage. These “hazmat” accidents often cause toxic materials to leak from the truck carrying them. Hazmat spills require significant clean-up operations on a highway. More seriously, they can cause severe injury to accident victims and residents near the spill, who may become sick after inhaling hazardous waste. Due to the high risk of injury, truck drivers must properly secure their cargo to avoid a spill. When drivers fail to exercise reasonable care, a court may require them to pay monetary damages to accident victims.

For example, a recent news article reported that five people lost their lives in a hazmat truck accident. The accident occurred on the highway as a semi-truck was traveling with about 7,500 gallons of ammonia. As the article explained, the semi-truck collided with multiple vehicles on the highway, causing it to begin leaking approximately 4,000 gallons of toxic ammonia. At least five people were airlifted to local hospitals, but they sadly died from their injuries. Additionally, 500 residents within a one-mile radius of the crash evacuated their homes due to the potential ammonia exposure.

What Types of Injuries Occur in Maryland Hazmat Accidents?

Victims of Maryland hazmat truck accidents often experience severe physical injury due to the large size of a typical truck. Accident victims may suffer from purely physical injuries, such as broken bones, or injuries that impair mental functioning, such as head injuries or concussions. A hazmat truck accident can also lead to emotional and psychological harm. Finally, accident victims may suffer property damage to their vehicle. When a car and a truck collide, the much smaller car often bears the brunt of the crash. In addition to typical truck accident injuries, hazmat accident victims may also suffer harm from contact with the hazardous substance. Direct contact with toxic materials can lead to severe burns or blisters on the skin. Even if accident victims do not make direct contact with the hazardous material, they could suffer negative health effects from inhaling toxic waste. As the news article explained, inhaling ammonia can cause difficulty breathing and may burn the skin, mouth, throat, lungs and eyes. At high levels, toxic gas can even cause death. Following a hazmat accident, you should consult a Maryland personal injury attorney to develop a plan to recover the compensation you need.

The danger of any vehicle crash is compounded when a truck or other large vehicle is involved in the accident. Large commercial vehicles like trucks are on the road to transport heavy items over long distances. That means that trucks can become difficult to maneuver in emergency situations, preventing truck drivers from turning or stopping suddenly due to the weight of their vehicle and cargo. Even without heavy cargo or large trailers, trucks are heavy, making accidents involving them inherently dangerous. Additionally, truck drivers are under extreme pressure to spend long hours on the road, as they need to meet delivery deadlines. This can lead to exhaustion and impaired judgment on the roads. Tired drivers are more likely to make mistakes when driving, increasing the likelihood of accidents. A recent news article discussed a serious truck accident.

According to the news article, an out-of-control trailer became dislodged from the tractor around 10 am on Wednesday, August 2. The crash occurred on the highway near the New York State border according to Mahwah Mayor Jim Wysocki. During the crash, the rig split into multiple pieces, with a huge container landing on a passing SUV on the other side of the divider and thousands of lemons from the truck’s cargo spilling onto the highway. Additionally, an overhead sign was struck and had to be replaced, which kept the northbound highway closed for several hours. The driver, who’s from Ontario, Canada, said he felt the load shift, tried to correct it, and dislodged the container, according to law enforcement officials. The container then flew off of the trailer, landing on an Audi SUV, and split open, dumping hundreds of crates of lemons across the highway. Fortunately, there were no serious injuries reported with the truck driver and the SUV operator taken to a local hospital with injuries not considered life-threatening.

What Are the Minimum Insurance Requirements in Maryland?

Maryland maintains minimum insurance requirements for drivers in the state. Minimum insurance requirements are designed to ensure sufficient compensation is available to victims of car accidents should it be required. As a result, Maryland drivers are required to purchase at least $30,000 in bodily injury liability coverage per person, $60,000 in bodily injury liability coverage per accident, and $15,000 in property damage liability coverage.

The danger of not wearing your seatbelt is compounded when a truck or other large vehicle is involved in the crash. That goes for people in the truck as well as others on the road. Large commercial vehicles like trucks are on the road to transport heavy items over long distances. That means that trucks can become difficult to maneuver in emergency situations, preventing truck drivers from turning or stopping suddenly due to the weight of their vehicle and cargo. Even without heavy cargo or large trailers, trucks are heavy, making accidents involving them inherently dangerous. Additionally, truck drivers are under extreme pressure to spend long hours on the road, as they need to meet delivery deadlines. This can lead to exhaustion and impaired judgment on the roads. Tired drivers are more likely to make mistakes when driving, increasing the likelihood of accidents. A recent news article discussed a serious truck accident.

According to the news article, an out-of-control semi-truck slammed into multiple condominium garage units around 7 pm on Friday, June 2. The crash occurred near the intersection between US-89 and Bear Lake Boulevard. Highway Patrol Troopers reported that the semi-truck was northbound along US-89 when it reportedly lost its breaks. As a result, the truck was unable to turn at the intersection with Bear Lake Boulevard, crashing directly onto the properties and going through several garages. Officials also reported that a 100-gallon propane tank was hit, forcing evacuations of nearby homes and businesses.

Firefighters and paramedics reported to the scene and were able to extricate a female passenger and a female driver from the truck. The passenger was flown by medical helicopter to a hospital in critical condition. The driver was transported by ambulance to a hospital in stable condition. Photos from the scene showed extensive damage to property caused by the crash. Fortunately, nobody else was injured during the crash, and law enforcement officials stated that impaired driving was not suspected.

When an emergency vehicle blares signals or flashes its emergency lights, it’s a cue for other vehicles to get out of the way. Accidents involving emergency vehicles happen at a substantial rate for various reasons. Emergency vehicles include ambulances, fire trucks, and police cars. Emergency vehicles may be traveling at higher speeds in order to respond to emergency situations and also may have to maneuver through traffic to reach their destination.

As such, this can lead to accidents involving other cars, trucks, and pedestrians. Some studies have shown that there’s an increased risk of crashes when emergency vehicles put on their lights and sirens. It may be an instinct to start to panic when emergency lights are blaring, and it may lead some to make sudden maneuvers in order to get out of the way of emergency vehicles. It is always important to pay close attention to surroundings, including checking mirrors if driving a vehicle and listening for any emergency sirens. Additionally, it is important to check your surroundings and to safely pull to the side or move out of the emergency vehicle’s way in a safe manner.

According to the National Safety Council, in 2020, 180 people died in crashes involving emergency vehicles. According to the National Safety Council, the majority of these deaths were occupants of non-emergency vehicles. In recent news, an ambulance was transporting a patient in Malta, New York when there was a collision with a box truck. The box truck attempted to make a U-turn when the ambulance slammed into it. In addition, snowy conditions on the road prevented the ambulance from stopping. The ambulance slid into a ditch and caught fire after the patient was removed from the vehicle. The patient and ambulance crew were taken to a local hospital by another ambulance for treatment of injuries. Fire crews put out the fire.

Hazardous materials, when spilled due to truck accidents, can cause major damage, health risks, clean-up and time. The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration developed a report titled “Traffic incident management in Hazardous Materials Spills in Incident Clearance”, the report indicates that clean-up of hazardous spills can be a major source of delay in clearing traffic incidents, and is typically expensive. The report categorizes spills into different areas: vehicular fluids, hazardous material cargoes, or a combination of both. Vehicular fluid spills involve materials that are used in a vehicle’s operations, such as fuel, radiator cooler, transmission fluid, brake fluid, hydraulic fluid, windshield wiper fluid, and battery acid. A hazardous materials cargo spill is a release of a substance or material capable of posing an unreasonable risk to health, safety, or property when transported for commercial purposes.

According to a recent news report, a tractor-trailer crashed across both sides of Interstate 95 in Baltimore County, Maryland. The accident involved six vehicles in total. The driver of the tractor-trailer and one of the other vehicles were taken to a local hospital for treatment of their injuries. The tractor-trailer overturned, which resulted in saddle tanks leaking fuel. A hazmat team was called to the scene.

Accidents Involving Hazardous Materials

On a typical road or highway, vehicles of all varying sizes can be seen traveling throughout. Drivers share the road with smaller sedans, medium-sized sedans, larger sedans, trucks ranging in size and type, bicyclists, and pedestrians. A common type of truck seen on the road, a semi-trailer truck, includes a combination of a tractor unit and at least one semi-trailer to carry freight. Semi-trucks can range in size, but the standard dimensions are 48 to 53 feet in length, 8.5 feet in height, and 13.5 feet in height. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, in 2020, truck tractors pulling a single semi-trailer accounted for 53 percent of the large trucks involved in fatal crashes in 2020, while tractors pulling two trailers made up 3 percent of the large trucks involved in fatal crashes.

According to a recent news report from Michigan, a collision involving a semi-truck resulted in the death of one man. A semi-truck was hauling large stones and heading east when the driver failed to stop at an intersection, hitting a car headed south. The man driving the car was pronounced dead at the scene, and the semi-truck driver was taken to a local hospital for injuries. An investigation into the accident is still ongoing.

What Are the Most Common Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents?

Although accidents can happen for a variety of reasons, there are three critical events according to the large truck crash causation study conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration from 2007. The first critical event assigned to large trucks is running out of the travel lane, either into another lane or off the road. The second critical event assigned to large trucks is vehicle loss of control due to traveling too fast for conditions, cargo shift, vehicle systems failure, poor road conditions, or other reasons. The last critical event is colliding with the rear end of another vehicle in the truck’s travel lane. Drivers of large trucks especially should take care to avoid any distractions while driving, should ensure that they pack cargo properly and safely, and take care to nsure that they remain alert during trips, and adhere to road rules, including speed.

Every year, about two percent of motor vehicle collision deaths are attributed to bicyclists. These bicyclists often share the road with larger vehicles, including heavy trucks like commercial trucks and dump trucks. Despite the relative size of these vehicles on the road, heavy truck drivers still owe bicyclists all the care and consideration when driving that they owe other, larger forms of transportation like passenger cars. Even so, truck drivers often forget to look for smaller vehicles and bicycles when sharing the road. This can be particularly devastating in the event of a collision because of the relative sizes of vehicles and the protections they afford. If this lack of care causes an accident, it may lead to a personal injury lawsuit.

According to a recent report, a bicyclist died of crash-related injuries 10 hours after they were struck by a dump truck driver. Witnesses to the scene say the driver and bicyclist were traveling side by side when the truck took a left, hitting the bicyclist. One witness said the truck driver wasn’t looking before turning, leading to the bicyclist’s death. The accident remains under investigation, and police have not determined who is liable for the accident.

Responsible drivers owe each other the bare minimum of looking before making a turn. Bike lanes often run next to traffic, meaning drivers should be aware of the possibility of a bicyclist riding next to them, especially when trying to turn. In Maryland, drivers, including truck drivers, are responsible for using reasonable care when operating a vehicle, including truck drivers. When truck drivers breach this duty of care, the victim or the victim’s family could bring a personal injury claim.

Truck accidents are often devastating when compared to accidents that take place between just passenger vehicles. This is often because when a truck is involved in an accident, it is usually larger in size, heavier in weight, and harder to control by the truck driver when compared to a passenger vehicle. This often results in an increased chance of property damage, significant injuries, or death to those involved.

According to a recent news report, an accident involving a U-Haul truck and a state department of transportation safety vehicle resulted in a serious accident. The state transportation safety vehicle was present on the road at the time to keep workers working on construction nearby safe. Based on an initial investigation, local authorities believe that the driver of the U-Haul was distracted in the moments before it crashed into a safety vehicle. As the accident remains under investigation, it remains unclear whether anyone was injured in the accident or if any charges will be filed.

Who should I consider as defendants in a truck accident case?

Following a truck accident, it can often be a confusing and complicated situation figuring out who exactly to bring a personal injury lawsuit against. Although your first instinct may be to sue the truck driver as an individual, it may actually be more strategic to also sue the company that employed the truck driver or even the manufacturer of the vehicle itself. Who you bring suit against ultimately depends on specific circumstances surrounding your collision and how it took place. Sometimes, potential plaintiffs are advised to sue more than just the truck driver as an individual, because the truck driver may not have much to offer the potential plaintiffs in terms of compensation. Other times, bringing the truck company that employs the truck driver is essential to the case because the company has agreed to indemnify, or be responsible for, the truck driver’s actions.

Because trucks are often the largest and heaviest vehicle on the road, they are also frequently involved in devastating accidents. If you are the driver of a smaller passenger vehicle, or even an SUV, you may have actively attempted to avoid or pass trucks on the road for fear of getting into an unexpected accident. These fears are unsurprising. After all, trucks are involved in thousands of accidents that result in significant injuries and fatalities each year for a variety of reasons.

According to a recent local news report, a man died after a tractor-trailer accident. Troopers on the scene reported that the driver of the tractor-trailer ran a red light and turned into an intersection, which caused him to crash into two vehicles that had the right of way. One of the vehicles that was struck, a Jeep, was hit on its right fender after it swerved but was able to get out of the way. The second vehicle, a Chrysler, was struck on the left side and swung off the side of the road. The driver of the Chrysler was transported to a local hospital, where he died from his injuries. The accident is still being looked into by local authorities and Maryland State Police Crash Team investigators.

Because trucks are so heavy and take up so much space, many people may not be adequately trained to properly drive or operate them. Truck drivers have to operate their vehicles with additional care, especially because trucks can often take up more space, move at faster speeds, and require the control and dexterity of an experienced driver to avoid an accident or tipping over when turning. Truck drivers also have to be good at ascertaining risk when exiting shopping centers or parking lots, since it takes longer for the entire length of the vehicle to make it onto the road and join the front of the truck. If timed incorrectly at a busy intersection, this could cause a major pile-up.

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