Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Rhode Island
Find out the most common causes of truck accidents in Denver with help from a truck accident attorney at Olson Law Firm! Call now for help! Truck accidents are serious road hazards both nationally and here in Rhode Island. From distracted driving to poor maintenance to regulatory violations and more, any number of factors can contribute to these devastating crashes. Determining what led to an accident is critically important to its victims, as the cause can point toward who is to blame – and who can be held financially liable for the consequences.
Were you hurt in a truck accident in Rhode Island? If so, Mike and his team at Bottaro Law are ready to investigate the incident, identify its cause and who may be to blame, and build a strong case for the compensation you deserve.
Contact us today for a free consultation. With our exclusive “No Fee Guarantee,” you owe us nothing unless (until) we win money for you.
Why You Need the RI Truck Wreck Lawyers at Bottaro Law
For more than a decade, truck accident victims in Rhode Island have turned to Bottaro Law for legal advice and advocacy because:
- Our team has decades of combined experience helping local injury victims.
- Our guiding principle is always to do the right thing for our clients.
- We offer a “No Fee Guarantee,” so you never pay anything unless we win your case.
- We provide 24/7 customer service, so we’re always available when you need us.
Most Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Rhode Island
Here are some of the most common causes of truck accidents in Rhode Island:
- Distracted driving – Truck drivers have multiple demands on their attention, including operating a complex vehicle, following a delivery route, and monitoring the dispatch radio. Distraction can lead to a lack of focus and an increased risk of accidents.
- Driver impairment – Some truck drivers turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with long days on the highway or to meet tight delivery deadlines. However, substance use impairs judgment, perception, and reaction times, increasing the risk of truck collisions.
- Driver fatigue – Even when drivers follow hours-of-service regulations, the long hours they spend on the road can lead to fatigue. Driving while overly fatigued can result in poor focus and slower reaction times, making it harder to control large, unwieldy trucks.
- Driver inexperience – Operating a commercial truck requires specialized training. Truck drivers who lack experience with large commercial vehicles or specific types of trucks pose a greater risk of causing truck accidents.
- Excessive speed – Truck drivers sometimes exceed the speed limit to save time or meet tight delivery deadlines. However, speeding makes trucks more difficult to control and increases stopping distances, raising the risk of accidents. Speed also makes injuries more severe when a collision occurs.
- Following too closely – Truck drivers who tailgate other vehicles can cause rear-end collisions when leading drivers brake since heavy commercial trucks don’t slow down as quickly as smaller, lighter vehicles.
- Overloaded trucks – Overloading a truck’s cargo beyond its rated capacity can make the truck harder to control and increases the chances of a mechanical problem, such as a tire or brake failure, which can easily lead to a truck crash.
- Imbalanced or unsecured cargo loads – Failing to balance or secure a cargo load properly can upset a truck’s center of gravity, making it harder for the truck driver to control.
- Manufacturing defects – If manufacturers produce inferior products, defective tires, brakes, suspensions, transmissions, or other critical parts, it can cause mechanical failures that lead to accidents.
- Inadequate vehicle maintenance – Deferred or poorly done truck inspections, maintenance, or repairs can also lead to mechanical problems that cause truck accidents.
- Poor road conditions – Adverse road conditions, such as potholes, road debris, black ice, standing water, and heavy fog or precipitation, can reduce a truck driver’s visibility or cause them to lose control of their vehicle and crash.
Who’s Responsible for a Truck Crash in Rhode Island?
Depending on the circumstances, any of the following parties could bear liability for a truck crash:
- The truck driver
- A trucking company
- The truck’s owner
- The cargo owner
- A cargo loading team
- Third-party truck mechanics
- The manufacturer of the truck or trailer
- Manufacturers of truck or trailer parts
Federal Regulations on Trucker Drive Time
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration imposes limits on how long interstate truck drivers can spend on duty or behind the wheel. Per these hours of service (HOS) restrictions:
- Truck drivers can drive up to 11 hours after at least 10 consecutive hours off-duty.
- Truck drivers can only drive for 14 consecutive hours after coming on duty following off-duty periods of at least 10 consecutive hours.
- Drivers must take breaks at least 30 minutes long after driving for 8 consecutive hours.
- Truck drivers may not drive more than 60 hours in a 7-day period or 70 hours in 8 days.
Methods to Prevent Truck Driving Accidents
Tips that motorists can follow to help avoid truck accidents include:
- Leave extra space when following behind or moving in front of a truck.
- Stay out of a trucker’s blind spots in front of, behind, and along the truck’s sides.
- Pull as far off to the side of the highway as possible if you need to stop for an emergency.
- Remember that trucks need more room to turn and allow them plenty of space.
- Always use indicators when turning or passing lanes around a truck. Yield the right-of-way to a truck driver that attempts to move in front of or pass you.