A tractor-trailer tries to merge into your lane on the highway unexpectedly. You honk and jerk your car into the next lane to avoid a severe accident. How did that just happen?
It probably has to do with blind spots.
These incidents usually happen if the truck driver doesn’t see your vehicle in the area surrounding their vehicle that their mirrors don’t cover. Commercial trucks have large blind spots that may make it harder to see smaller vehicles. However, the trucker is legally required to drive safely and only switch lanes when it is safe.
If you were in a truck accident with injuries, the truck blind spot accident attorneys at Nix Patterson could help you receive compensation for your damages and other losses.
Every motor vehicle on the road has blind spots. But commercial trucks have larger blind spots than other vehicles. A truck blind spot accident involves the driver not seeing another vehicle in one of their blind spots. The truck may attempt to merge into that lane, either sideswiping the other vehicle or possibly running them off the road or into other vehicles or objects.
Regardless of the details, a truck blind spot accident can lead to severe and sometimes fatal injuries for drivers and passengers in other vehicles. For example, if a truck runs you off the road because they didn’t see you in their blind spot, your vehicle could hit a tree, flip in the ditch, or even veer into oncoming traffic. Injuries could range from broken bones to cuts and scrapes, head injuries, and even death.
Tractor trailers have blind spots on all sides that you should avoid if possible. They are:
The blind spot on the big rig’s right side can extend the trailer’s length. Because of this large blind spot, drivers should only pass trucks on the left. There is a blind spot on the left side, but truckers expect other drivers to pass on that side.
Truckers sit higher off the road than other vehicles, so drivers may not see cars immediately in front of them. If a vehicle gets too close, the truck hood could block the trucker’s view. The blind spot usually extends about 20 feet in front of the truck. Don’t merge too closely in front of a truck, or you risk a severe accident.
The rear blind spot extends almost 200 feet behind the trailer. If you tailgate a truck, the trucker might not see you. Stay far enough behind the truck to see the driver in his side view mirrors.
Remember that these truck blind spots can be dozens of feet long and could hide several vehicles. While truckers are responsible for checking their blind spots and avoiding accidents, you can help by not being in those areas more than necessary.
The most common place that blind spot accidents happen is on highways and interstates. Suppose you are driving your vehicle next to a tractor-trailer in traffic, and it suddenly tries to shift into your lane. You can move into another lane to avoid the accident if you’re lucky. But sometimes truckers switch lanes quickly and hit people in their blind spot. You could change lanes to avoid the accident and hit another vehicle.
A Nix Patterson truck blind spot lawyer will review the accident evidence to understand who caused the accident and why. Then, they will hold the responsible party accountable for their negligence.
Blind spots will probably always be with us on the road. While truckers are often responsible for these crashes, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk.
First, if you are next to a large truck, see if you can see the truck driver in his side view mirror. If so, he can probably see you, but there’s no guarantee, so pass when you can. If you must pass the truck and change into his lane, wait until the truck cab is completely visible in your rearview mirror.
Second, avoid driving and passing on the truck’s right. It’s harder for drivers to see you; they are trained to watch more closely for vehicles passing on the left.
Third, pass trucks quickly without breaking the speed limit. The less time you are in or near a trucker’s blind spot, the better.
When a truck merges into your vehicle because its driver didn’t see you, he could be liable for the blind spot accident. The trucking company also could be responsible if the driver was their employee; they are usually responsible for the negligence of their employees under the legal doctrine of respondeat superior.
The employer also could be liable if non-functional or improperly adjusted mirrors contributed to the blind spot accident. Further, trucking companies are legally obligated to hire and train competent drivers to drive safely. If the company hires or improperly trains an incompetent driver, they could be liable for your injuries.
Sometimes a truck blind spot accident could be the fault of more than one party. To avoid being held partly responsible for the accident, you should promptly retain a truck accident attorney to advocate for your rights.
If you think the truck driver is liable for the blind spot accident, it is easy to assume that the trucking company will compensate you fairly for your injuries. However, insurance companies usually don’t make it easy to obtain compensation after a truck accident. They will hire attorneys, deny accident claims, and even sometimes try to blame the victim. This is even more common in blind spot accidents where liability is easier to contest.
However, with the help of a truck accident attorney, you will have a good chance of receiving compensation. There are no guarantees, and all cases differ, but our personal injury attorneys will aggressively advocate for your legal right to fair compensation. Some of the damages you could be entitled to in a blind spot truck crash lawsuit are:
Regarding the size of your settlement, there is a different answer for every truck accident case. When your attorney meets with you, they will analyze the case, collect evidence, learn about your injuries and medical care, etc. They may be able to estimate the size of a potential settlement, but every case is different. You can be assured that your Nix Patterson attorney will fight for every dime you deserve.
Were you hurt in a truck blind spot accident? You could be overwhelmed with medical bills, living expenses, and being out of work. At Nix Patterson, we are dedicated to ensuring that our clients get the financial justice they deserve when a truck driver injures them. Contact our truck blind spot accident attorneys today.
Nix Patterson only works on a contingency fee basis. Our clients pay us nothing unless we win. Schedule a free consultation today. Call 512.328.5333 or complete the form below.
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