According to statistics in 2015 from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, 10 percent of accident fatalities in large truck collisions are due to lane violations of some sort by the truck driver. A recent incident on James Madison Highway is simply the most recent example. On Monday, January 23rd, a tractor-trailer carrying a large load of sand crossed the center line and struck an oncoming vehicle head-on. All three occupants of the other car were killed instantly, including a man, his wife, and her mother. The driver was charged with reckless driving.
Lane violations by large vehicles are all too common in Virginia and other states. Examples include:
- Large trucks occupying the left lane in areas where large vehicles are required to stay right at all times
- Sudden lane changes in front of smaller vehicles, particularly in areas where trucks have lower speed limits than other cars
- Drifting into other lanes, which is more common for larger vehicles in part because of their additional width
Drivers of smaller vehicles need to be constantly aware of the trucks around them. Trucks have larger blind spots and limited maneuverability, and though the truck is often the cause of the potential accident, it usually falls to the smaller vehicle to avoid it. And in almost all accidents of this type, the drivers and passengers in the car will sustain more significant injuries than the driver of the truck.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident caused by a large truck, knowing how to proceed in building your case can be difficult. There are dozens of variables that come into play in these accidents, and only an experienced and knowledgeable attorney can help you understand the various ways that the driver of a large truck should have proceeded to minimize the accident risk.