Tulsa, OK and Bentonville, AR Truck Accident Lawyers
Navigating the Aftermath of Truck Accidents in Oklahoma and Arkansas
In Oklahoma and in Arkansas, accidents involving large commercial trucks are unfortunately common and often result in severe injuries. These incidents can lead to substantial physical, emotional, and financial setbacks for victims. Recovering compensation following such accidents is crucial, but it can prove challenging, particularly when dealing with insurance companies and parties at fault. That’s where the truck accident lawyers at Bundy Law come into play. Our attorneys are here to guide you through your case from start to finish.
Call 918-771-7045 today to schedule a consultation.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in Oklahoma and Arkansas
Commercial trucks pose significant risks to other vehicles on the road due to their size and weight. These factors make them difficult to maneuver in highway traffic and narrow downtown streets teeming with pedestrians and bicyclists. A single careless move from a truck driver can cause devastating personal injuries or even fatalities within seconds.
Various types of accidents involve trucks, including:
Side impact accidents: Also known as T-bone crashes, these accidents happen when one vehicle crashes into the side of another, commonly at intersections.
Rollover accidents: Improperly loaded or shifting cargo can suddenly cause the truck and trailer to roll over onto nearby vehicles.
Jackknife accidents: Extreme weather on roadways or unsafe roads can force a truck driver to brake suddenly, pushing the trailer alongside the truck. Unexpected or erratic driving from other vehicles can also cause these accidents.
Underride accidents: In this scenario, a car crashes into the back of a truck and travels completely underneath the trailer.
Head-on accidents: A truck collides front-end first with another vehicle. These accidents often occur on Oklahoma interstates, highways, and local city streets in Tulsa.
How Blind Spots Can Lead to Trucking Accidents
Commercial trucks have a larger blind spot than other vehicles. If a vehicle is traveling too close to a truck—whether besides, in front of, or behind—the truck driver may not see them, leading to potentially catastrophic accidents.
When you cannot see a truck’s side-view mirrors, that means the truck driver cannot see you, putting your safety at risk. Conditions are even more dire when an 80,000-pound tractor-trailer changes lanes and cuts off a closely following passenger car. Similarly, when a car changes lanes too close to the front of a truck, a driver risks entering the truck’s forward blind spot. This type of driving scenario can lead to a severe semi-truck accident.
To avoid these situations, steer clear of the three “no-zones” on commercial trucks:
Front no-zone: Covers the zone 20 feet in front of a commercial or large-capacity truck.
Side no-zone: Covers the zone on the right side of a commercial truck, trailer, or large-capacity truck.
Rear no-zone: Covers the back 250 feet of a commercial truck or trailer.
Truck accidents can be far more catastrophic than typical car collisions due to these commercial vehicles’ sheer size and weight. The aftermath is often devastating when a passenger car collides with a heavily loaded tractor-trailer.
Additional Dangers Posed by Trucking Accidents
Commercial trucks pose unique risks on the road. Their large size makes maneuvering in tight spaces or making turns in parking lots challenging. In congested traffic, taking quick evasive actions to avoid collisions can be difficult, especially if other drivers are operating their vehicles erratically. Bad road conditions or heavy rain can also complicate truck handling. Commercial trucks transporting hazardous or flammable cargo can pose significant threats to entire communities.
Despite rigorous training and strict regulations, truck drivers can make mistakes. Extended shifts and the pressure to deliver cargo on time can result in fatigue, leading to impaired judgment. Diminished reflexes can cause serious accidents and even fatalities when big rig drivers react to unexpected situations.
Determining Liability in a Truck Accident
Numerous regulations regarding vehicle maintenance and inspection bind truck drivers. However, in many cases, the trucking company bears the liability for accidents involving their drivers, regardless of the driver’s negligence.
Besides the trucking company, other parties, such as truck parts manufacturers, could be held liable if design flaws or production errors led to the accident. Other motorists, including drivers of passenger cars and motorcyclists, could also be held responsible, especially if they were speeding or violating traffic laws.
In rare instances, government agencies could be pursued for liability, especially if poor road maintenance or unattended construction equipment contributed to the accident. However, proving such cases can be challenging, as opposing counsel often argues that drivers should have been more cautious given the road conditions.
Steps to Take Following a Truck Accident
A truck accident can disrupt victims’ lives significantly. Beyond dealing with severe injuries and vehicle repairs, victims must also seek justice and compensation from those responsible. Gathering substantial evidence, such as police reports, photographs, videos, physical evidence, and witness testimonies, is crucial. An experienced truck accident attorney can guide you through these steps, helping you focus on your recovery.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a truck accident in Tulsa or Bentonville, it’s recommended to follow these steps:
- Accept immediate medical treatment from first responders.
- Provide your statement to the police at the scene.
- Inform your medical and automotive insurance providers about the accident.
- Notify your family, friends, and workplace about the situation.
- Schedule any necessary follow-up medical treatments.
- Seek the services of an attorney experienced in handling tractor-trailer accidents
Trying to recover while dealing with insurance firms, trucking company lawyers, and auto repair shops can exacerbate stress. In fatal incidents, seeking justice becomes even more complex. A competent legal team can alleviate these burdens, allowing victims to focus on recovery.
Call 918-771-7045 today to schedule a consultation.