Semi-Trucks Are Dangerous When They’re Turning
When a semi-truck is making any type of turn, you may quickly realize that they need more room than passenger vehicles. The reason for this is because semi-trucks are large and take up a lot of space. Therefore, before they can make a turn, they must make sure that they are not in anyone else’s space, do not collide with another vehicle, and that their path to turn is clear.
There are many ways an 18-wheeler can cause an accident while turning, but there are two type of turns that tend to be more dangerous than others.
Wide-turn semi-truck accidents
When a semi-truck needs to make a right turn, they will need to swing wide to successfully do this. Here are a few reasons why wide turns often lead to truck accidents:
- Semi-trucks are long: Semi-trucks are much longer than passenger vehicles. Therefore, they must learn to work with the little space that they have available on the roads. This means that they often turn into another lane in order to have enough room to swing their truck back into the turning lane.
- The wheels do not work together: Tractor wheels and trailer wheels do not always follow the same path when turning. This can make things very difficult for the trucker as they aim to drive the tractor one way, but the trailer wheels tend to go a different way.
- Semi-trucks may end up crossing into other lanes: If you have driven around a large truck, you most likely have seen them moving very close to other lanes. This is very common when they are preparing to make a turn as it gives them a better place to start and finish the turn. If they remain centered in their own lane, they will most likely need to swing even wider when making their turn. However, if a semi-truck moves closer to another lane, this can cause an issue as many passenger drivers might think that the trucker is turning left when they are actually getting ready to turn right. In addition, if a vehicle is in the left lane, they may be at risk of being struck as well.
- Truckers cannot see every vehicle nearby: Truckers can see passenger vehicles to their left by using their mirrors or checking their blind spots. However, it is almost impossible for them to see vehicles in their rear and right areas. This means that semi-trucks are more likely to crush or collide with a passenger vehicle when turning right.
Left-turn semi-truck accidents
Left-turn semi-truck accidents are almost always preventable as most truckers know that turning left should be avoided if possible. A truck driver making a left turn across several lanes of oncoming traffic is one of the most common ways that accidents occur. The reason why this causes accidents is because semi-trucks are long, slow, and take more time to make it fully across an intersection than a passenger vehicle. Therefore, if passenger vehicles are approaching when a semi-truck is making a left turn to cross a road or intersection, the passenger drivers must slow down, stop, and wait for the semi-truck to make it across. However, this can lead to a multi-car pileup or collision with the truck if the vehicles do not stop or see the truck turning in time.
Where do wide-turn and left-turn truck accidents happen most often?
Wide-turn and left-turn truck accidents can happen anywhere at any time, but there are two different types of areas where they happen most often, such as:
- Intersections: Intersections are very busy and consist of several vehicles going different ways. That said, when a semi-truck decides to make a turn at an intersection, this can cause a severe or deadly accident within seconds. They must make sure that they can fully clear the intersection before an oncoming vehicle gets close.
- Urban city areas: In urban areas, the turning lanes are very small and narrow, giving semi-trucks limited space to move around to turn. This can lead to an accident very quickly as they may strike another vehicle close by.
Common injuries people suffer as a result of semi-truck turning accidents
When a passenger vehicle is involved in an accident with a semi-truck, the results can be devastating or even fatal. If an individual is lucky enough to survive the impact, weight, and force of a semi-truck, they will most likely suffer catastrophic injuries, which are severe, permanent, and life-changing. Here are a few of the common injuries people suffer after being in a semi-truck accident:
- Head and skull injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back and spinal cord injuries
- Broken, fractured, and crushed bones
- Internal bleeding
- Internal organ damage
- Road rash and burns
- Severe bruising
- Scarring and disfigurement
How to prove fault for a semi-truck wide-turn or left-turn accident in Mississippi
While many people believe that semi-trucks are automatically at fault when an accident happens, this is not always the case. Instead, you must have proof that the truck driver was negligent and caused your accident. A Mississippi personal injury attorney from Merkel & Cocke will be happy to help you with this. Our team will meet with you to listen to your experience, assess the facts of your claim, and collect the proper evidence to build a solid case. Some examples of ways that we may prove that a truck driver making a wide turn or left turn was at fault include:
- The trucker failed to use their turn signals.
- The trucker entered another vehicle’s lane.
- The trucker failed to make sure that the road or intersection was clear before turning.
- The trucker entered a right turn too far away from the curb.
- The trucker failed to check their blind spots.
- The trucker put the truck in reverse to complete a turn.
When individuals are involved in accidents with semi-trucks, they typically become frustrated, stressed, and overwhelmed. Their vehicles may be totaled, and their medical bills may continue to pile up. Therefore, the personal injury lawyers at Merkel & Cocke, P.A. do our best to make sure that the legal process remains smooth and easy-going for our clients. We provide strong legal representation and will handle all the challenges and obstacles that come with your case. Call our office or submit our contact form to schedule a free consultation today. Our team can also assist you in person at our Jackson, Clarksdale, Greenville, and Oxford office locations.
After graduating from the University of Virginia Law School in 1975, Mr. Cocke and Mr. Merkel established Merkel & Cocke, P.A. in 1982. Since that time the emphasis of Mr. Cocke’s practice has progressed toward medical malpractice. At the present time his practice is exclusively devoted to handling medical negligence cases for the plaintiff, either as a result of direct contact by the client or on referral from other attorneys who are not familiar with the handling of medical negligence cases. Mr. Cocke was selected Best Lawyer of the year for 2012 and 2014 in The Memphis area in the field of Medical Malpractice and has been selected a Best Lawyer and Super Lawyer every year since 2006. Learn more about John Hartwell Cocke here.