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The Difference Between Semi-Truck Accidents and Car Accidents

Posted on September 11, 2022

Vehicle accidents are not uncommon, but incidents involving larger commercial trucks can be incredibly devastating. There is a significant difference between accidents involving semi-trucks and traditional car accidents. Not only does this include the total amount of property damage, but also the level of severity of injuries. Additionally, these incidents will require more investigation than traditional vehicle accidents.

The Size of Large Trucks Plays a Major Role

When we examine information available from the Federal Highway Administration, we can see that large commercial trucks can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds when fully loaded with cargo. Additionally, larger trucks can reach lengths of up to 70 feet.

The sheer size of commercial trucks, when compared to most other vehicles on the roadway, is a major factor when it comes to the severity of these incidents.

Injuries and Property Damage are More Extensive

The size of larger commercial trucks is a contributor to the severity of both injuries and property damage. Even though statistically these incidents are not nearly as common as crashes involving only traditional vehicles, the incidents that do occur are more severe.

Individuals in traditional vehicles involved in these accidents are much more likely to sustain catastrophic injuries such as spinal cord trauma, traumatic brain injuries, amputations, internal organ damage, and more.

Additionally, the property damage involved in semi-truck crashes is likely to be more severe, and these collisions are more likely to lead to a traditional vehicle becoming totaled.

The Processes of Recovering Compensation

The process of recovering compensation after a semi-truck collision is going to be more complicated than traditional car accidents. After a regular crash occurs, the process is fairly straightforward. The parties involved, and their insurance carriers, usually settle the claim, and the investigation into the incident is probably not going to be overly complex.

However, crashes involving large commercial trucks are going to involve additional parties. Not only does this include the drivers involved, but also the trucking company as well as their insurance carrier and legal team.

Determining liability after a semi-truck crash in Illinois can be challenging. Gathering evidence is more complicated, typically due to the fact that there is so much more that needs to be gathered. This includes the truck’s electronic control module (ECM), the driver’s electronic logging device (ELD), video surveillance footage, trucking company records, and more. This is an intensive process, and a truck accident attorney needs to be involved much sooner so they can use their resources to help gather evidence.

The Intimidation Factor

Most drivers have experienced a car accident and have gone through the insurance settlement process. This is not a mystery to most, and is typically straightforward. However, accidents involving trucking companies can be intimidating for the average driver. It is not uncommon for crash victims to be approached by agents for the truck company in an attempt to get the victim to drop their claim or accept a low settlement.

Truck crash victims who work with an attorney will not have to worry about the intimidation. They can let their lawyer handle every aspect of the process.