Top 5 Causes of Truck Accidents and How to Avoid One (Infographic)

Sharing the road in the Tampa area isn’t always easy, especially when the other vehicles on the road are semi trucks. Before you get behind the wheel, discover the top five causes of truck accidents as per the Law Offices of Ronald A. Ramos, P.C. and learn how you can avoid them while staying safe on the road.

Abrupt Lane Changes

While it’s easy to blame truck drivers for incidents on the road, vehicle drivers cause their fair share of collisions, especially when they change lanes or pass semi trucks abruptly. To avoid a collision, always give truck drivers much more space than you think they need so they can slow down or stop on the highway.

Unsafe Driving

Truckers also engage in unsafe driving habits, such as failing to check blind spots and neglecting to use turn signals. In fact, poor decision-making is one of the most common reasons for truck crashes. While you can’t predict whether a truck driver will flip on the turn signal before changing lanes, you can protect yourself just in case. Never drive in a trucker’s blind spot, and avoid letting trucks follow you too closely.

Distracted Driving

Truck drivers put in hour after hour on the highway, and though regulations prevent them from texting or otherwise distracting themselves, these incidents still happen from time to time. When you approach a semi truck on the highway, be on the alert for signs of distracted driving, such as swerving, veering into another lane, or sudden stops. If you notice any, give the truck an extra-wide berth as you pass. People can get in touch with Kramer Injury Law LLC attorneys, in case there is an accident.

Physical Impairment

Incidents of physical impairment, such as the driver falling asleep or experiencing a medical emergency behind the wheel, are relatively uncommon. However, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reports that they account for nearly 10 percent of truck collisions. Always stay alert when driving near semi trucks, and don’t hesitate to call the trucking company in question to report suspicious behavior. You can usually find contact information printed on the rear of the vehicle.

Adverse Weather

The weather can change in an instant in the Tampa area, with bright sunshine one minute and torrential rain the next. Whether you’re driving on an open highway or a road that’s under construction, adverse weather can be distracting and dangerous. Avoid a truck collision by turning on headlights, slowing down to a safer speed, and refraining from making sudden moves on the road.

If you’ve been involved in a truck collision in the Tampa area, don’t wait to get the legal assistance you need during the claims process. Call McIntyre Thanasides for experienced legal help: 844-511-4800.


5 Tips for Avoiding a Semi Truck’s Blind Spots

trucking_accidentsIf you have been driving for any length of time, whether it’s road tripping to see America’s beauty or driving the daily commute, you know that sharing the road with large commercial vehicles is not uncommon. Safe driving should be the primary concern. The best quality fuel system available or a powerful drivetrain system should be secondary. Unfortunately, traveling around a semi-truck presents a set of challenges that are vastly different from sharing the road with other vehicles. According to,  with the combination of the size of the truck itself and its freight, semis can weigh around 18,000 pounds on average. This makes focusing on how you interact with these vehicles critical. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, nearly 4,000 people die from accidents involving large trucks each year. With lighting specialists from one can make sure to have their vehicles sorted.

One of the principle dangers in driving around trucks is navigating their blind spots. Semi-trucks have large blind spots, or zones in which they are unable to see other vehicles. The zones represent profound danger for motorists because if a truck driver can’t see you, he doesn’t know to look out for you. You’re not likely to win in a collision with an 18,000-pound vehicle. Below are tips for avoiding blind spots and safely driving around large commercial vehicles. If you need to buy parts for commercial trucks, fetch for fiberglass semi truck fenders, who can get for lesser prices.

  1. Keep truck mirrors in plain sight: When encountering a truck, make sure that you can see the mirrors and, even more so, see the face of the truck driver. If you can’t see either, it’s likely that the truck driver can’t see you. If they decide to switch lanes they may not be aware that you are in their path.
  2. Avoid blind spots altogether, especially on the right side: The best way to avoid blind spots is to know where they are. A semi’s blind spots are directly in front and in back of the truck, on the truck’s left side near the door and the entire length of the truck’s right side. The truck’s right side is particularly perilous because the truck’s length and the driver’s position in the truck makes it difficult to spot items on that side. If you are on the right side of the truck, it’s best to give the trucker 2-3 lane’s distance to ensure that they can see you.
  3. Stay a safe distance behind the truck: It’s important to maintain a distance of 20 to 25 car lengths behind a truck. The size of a semi-truck makes it impossible to see around it. If the truck slows down, swerves to avoid debris or stops suddenly, it will be difficult to avoid an accident.
  4. When passing a large truck, do it fast: You’re going to have to pass a large truck at some point. When this happens, it’s important to do it as quickly as possible. When you move into the next lane, you are placing your vehicle in the truck’s blind spot. To be safe, move beyond the truck quickly or get over as far you possible can when passing.
  5. Blow your horn: At times, a truck may enter your lane before you have a chance to move beyond it. If this happens, honk your horn quickly and forcibly. This may be the only way that a truck driver knows that they are entering the path of a car.

If you are involved in an accident with a semi-truck, you are likely going through a difficult time. Let the trucking accident lawyers at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. help you put the pieces back together. Contact us today at 844-511-4800.

4 Causes of catastrophic trucking accidents

trucking_accidentsAccidents involving large, commercial delivery trucks (semis, 18-wheelers) often prove devastating for all those involved. The average semi with freight on board can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. This is about 20 times the size of a standard car, truck or SUV. With that weight disparity, fender-benders can cause serious injuries, side swipes can be life-altering and serious collisions can be deadly. Unfortunately, it’s hard to know what the trucker in the big rig next to you is going through or if his vehicle is in adequate condition. Daily driving is not easy, and when you add large commercial vehicles to the mix, an extra set of caution and awareness is required.

There are a number of reasons why catastrophic trucking accidents happen. The personal injury attorneys at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. are providing this list of the top causes for these accidents. This list is meant to bring awareness to drivers on our roadways and encourage precautionary driving when encountering large commercial delivery vehicles.

Unrealistic and dangerous expectations placed on truck drivers

This is likely the largest reason for catastrophic trucking accidents and wrongful death in Sarasota because it feeds into some of the other factors in these accidents. Trucking companies often put strict, unrealistic deadlines on their drivers to make deliveries. Some companies pay drivers per load delivered. This creates an environment in which drivers are encouraged to drive faster and longer to make the maximum amount of money. These drivers are less rested and are driving recklessly. This is a recipe for disaster.

The health of many truckers

As mentioned in the previous section, many truckers have unrealistic and dangerous expectations placed on them. They often continue driving when they are mandated to take a rest. This compromises their health, leads to fatigue and places a vehicle, weighing tens of thousands of pounds, in the hands of a physically impaired individual. A recent study found that a driver who has been awake for 18 hours has the impairment level of someone with a blood alcohol concentration of .05.

To combat high levels of fatigue, many drivers turn to stimulants to give them a boost. However, these drugs affect mood and decision-making ability.

Also, a study commissioned by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration indicated that as many as 27 percent of all commercial truck drivers have sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can severely impact driving performance by dramatically increasing fatigue.

Distracted Driving

For truckers, the drive is long, often as many as 14 hours per shift from some drivers. The monotony leads many to engage in activities that can distract them. Cell phone use, watching videos, eating are all activities that can take drivers away from focused driving and lead to accidents.

Equipment Failure as a cause of trucking accidents

Proper maintenance of large vehicles is critical. However, there are a number of items that can malfunction and if they do, it can lead to a major accident. Also, issues with worn tires or faulty brakes can prove deadly.

If you or a loved one is the victim of a catastrophic trucking accident, you world has likely been turned upside down. Let us help. The Tampa personal injury attorneys at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A. are well experienced in these cases and can build a strategy to get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today at 844-511-4800.



Five Reasons Why the Trucking Industry Needs Tighter Regulations in Place

trucking_accidentSleep-deprived truck drivers have been a topic of debate, particularly since the traumatic accident that severely injured actor and comedian Tracy Morgan and killed his friend in 2014. There is evidence to show that the truck driver that caused the accident had been awake for more than 28 hours and had been on duty for about 13 and a half hours at the time of the crash. This type of negligent behavior is not isolated to this incident, but unfortunately can be common throughout the trucking industry as companies want to maximize revenue. Attempts have been made to change the laws governing the hours that truck driver may work, but more legislative action is necessary or these types of crashes will continue to take innocent victim’s lives.

Below are five striking statistics with respect to truck-related accidents:

  1. The death toll in truck-involved crashes rose 17 percent from 2009 to 2013.
  2. Fatalities in truck-involved crashes have risen four years in a row, reaching 3,964 in 2013.
  3. During 2013 alone, 691 truck drivers or passengers of large trucks were killed.
  4. Injuries involving large trucks in 2013 impacted as many as 95,000 people.
  5. Large-truck drivers in 2013 had the highest percentage (15{7dff60334df83244b79b5471a8769907d27e202ac622cbe5ff51878e61595e62}) of previously recorded crashes compared to drivers of other ve­hicle types (motorcycles, 12.9{7dff60334df83244b79b5471a8769907d27e202ac622cbe5ff51878e61595e62}; passenger cars, 12.8{7dff60334df83244b79b5471a8769907d27e202ac622cbe5ff51878e61595e62}; and light trucks, 12.4{7dff60334df83244b79b5471a8769907d27e202ac622cbe5ff51878e61595e62}).

These statistics are based on the latest information available as published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Existing Federal Trucking Regulations

Federal regulations do exist to limit the drive time between periods of rest for truck drivers. The latest regulations limit truckers to 60 hours of on duty time per week and 11 hours of drive time per day. Further, there is a mandatory resting period of 34 hours each week, in order for drivers to get at least two consecutive nights of sleep a week. There has been pushback by the trucking industry, who is opposed to these regulations, which can affect their bottom line.

For a full list of the regulations, visit the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration site.

If you have questions about the current rules and regulations impacting truck drivers, or if you have been involved in a trucking-related accident, contact Marc Matthews at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A.