An 18-wheeler is among the many terms used to refer to a type of large truck composed of a tractor unit where one or several semi-trailers are hitched. The vehicle is used for heavy-duty hauling, mostly in the commercial and construction industry. Like most large trucks commanding the road, 18-wheelers are notoriously vulnerable to accidents. As noted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety or IIHS, roughly 1 in every 10 traffic fatalities involves large trucks such as 18-wheelers. About 130,000 individuals are said to be injured in an 18-wheeler accident each year.
As one can easily guess, 18-wheelers and other large trucks are particularly dangerous to other commuters due to their overpowering size. Most of these vehicles are 20 to 30 times heavier than a typical passenger car. This makes any large truck much harder to maneuver. It’s also easy to see that the huge discrepancy in size can make even the most minor of collisions extremely devastating. A truck’s size can also cause the driver to be vulnerable to no-zone areas or blind spots.
Of course, these risk factors aren’t much of a problem as long as truck drivers are able to receive proper training before being allowed by employers to operate any type of vehicle. The real danger lies on other, more conspicuous causes of 18-wheeler and other large truck accidents. According to the Chris Mayo Law Firm website, devastating truck accidents a result of negligence, particularly instances of truck driver error, drunk driving, and hours of service violation. The website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ® adds truck malfunction, defective parts, and improper loading and securing of cargo as other common reasons behind these horrifying incidents.
It is true that 18-wheelers and other large trucks may pose certain dangers in highways and roads. However, truck drivers and operators can easily mitigate risks by following safety protocols and traffic regulations. There is still a way to curb the growing numbers of truck accidents occurring in America.