Who Is at Fault in a Blind Spot Truck Crash in Las Vegas, NV
A tractor trailer’s blind spots are much larger than those on a standard vehicle. It’s extremely dangerous for motorists to linger in these areas — so dangerous that transportation agencies even have a nickname for a commercial truck’s blind spots. They’re called No Zones.
Truck drivers are trained to account for their blind spots while driving. They should watch for vehicles entering their blind spots and take extra precautions when changing lanes, turning, or braking. Similarly, drivers need to be especially cautious when driving around semi-trucks so that everyone does their best to prevent an accident.
When truckers fail to check take their blind spots before maneuvering and collide with another vehicle, the occupants in the smaller vehicle will likely pay a heavier price. Truck accident victims often suffer severe and sometimes life-altering injuries. The cost of treating catastrophic injuries can take significant financial toll as victims try to return to daily life.
If you have been hurt in a blind spot truck crash in Las Vegas, get in touch with a truck accident lawyer at THE702FIRM Injury Attorneys right away. Our exceptional legal team can help you fight for maximum compensation from the party(s) responsible for the crash. Sometimes, that means going up against several insurance companies at once. That’s more work than you should have to do while trying to heal from your injuries.
Our attorneys have more than 130 years of combined legal experience and are well-regarded in their field. Among our numerous professional credentials, several of our lawyers are members of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an invitation-only organization for trial lawyers who’ve won multimillion-dollar judgments on behalf of their clients.
Don’t wait to get high-quality legal representation for your blind spot truck accident case. Call or contact us today for a free consultation.
What Are Blind Spots?
All motor vehicles have areas in their immediate vicinity where it’s difficult for the person handling the vehicle to see what’s happening around them. These areas of low visibility are known as blind spots.
Even with your rearview or side-view mirrors, it can be difficult to see all the vehicles around you. That’s why it’s good practice to look over your shoulder at nearby traffic when changing lanes.
Where Are the Blind Spots Around a Truck?
While all motor vehicles have issues with blind spots to a certain degree, the problem is exacerbated when it comes to large trucks. This is because of how large trucks are designed and made. Their extra size and length, especially when pulling a trailer behind them, make it difficult to fully see everything around them. This is true even when trucks employ extra mirrors or use other tools to check their blind spots.
Most trucks have four key blind spots, or No Zones.
- Front No Zone: Because trucks sit so high off the road and have large engine compartments extending away from the cab, truck drivers often have trouble seeing cars that are close in front of them. Trucks also have longer stopping distances, so cutting in front of a truck could cause a serious rear-end or override accident if someone needs to brake suddenly.
- Rear No Zone: When a truck is pulling a trailer, there is no way for the driver to see what’s directly behind it because the trailer fully blocks the driver’s view. This lack of visibility makes it extremely dangerous to follow closely behind a truck, as you could easily crash into it if it suddenly stops or slows down.
- Right No Zone: The largest blind spot on a truck occurs on the right side. It begins at the truck’s side mirror and extends the full length of the trailer and across two lanes of traffic. If you’re stuck on a truck’s right side, move as soon as possible. If the driver needs to change lanes or make a right turn, you may not be visible.
- Left No Zone: The smallest of the No Zones, this is the area on the truck’s left side and extends the full length of the truck. A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t see the truck driver in the truck’s side-view mirror, he/she probably cannot see you.
Causes of Blind Spot Crashes in Las Vegas
Some of the most common causes of Las Vegas blind spot truck accidents include:
- Trucks following too closely: Truck drivers can have trouble seeing cars in front of them. If traffic slows or stops, truck drivers could strike the vehicle ahead of them.
- Cars tailgating trucks: Cars that follow too slowly run the risk of causing a rear-end truck accident because they “disappear” in a truck’s rear blind spot.
- Negligent driving: When truck drivers aren’t careful when merging, changing lanes, or making turns, they can collide with other vehicles in their blind spots.
- Passenger cars traveling through a truck’s blind spots: Motorists should exercise caution when traveling through a truck’s No Zones. If a car quickly enters a truck’s blind spot and the trucker doesn’t notice, he or she may attempt to change lanes or make a turn without realizing that there’s another vehicle in the way.
- Distracted driving: Truck drivers should always be paying attention to their vehicles and the environment around them, but this isn’t always the case. If a truck driver is distracted by talking on the phone or texting, they are violating regulations set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and can be held accountable for any resulting accidents.
- Intoxication: The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) for commercial drivers is 0.04, half the legal limit allowed for other drivers. Drivers who abuse alcohol or drugs have dulled reflexes, impaired judgment, and reduced inhibitions, all of which increase the chances of a blind spot accident.
- Fatigued driving: Truckers often travel long stretches of road for hours at a time. If they do not follow hours-of-service regulations mandating certain rest periods, they run the risk of falling asleep behind the wheel. Unfortunately, truck drivers are sometimes offered incentives by their employers to make their deliveries as fast as possible. A tired truck driver may make sloppy judgments and react slower in an emergency, greatly increasing the chance of a blind spot accident.
Common Types of Truck Blind Spot Accidents
Because trucks have such large blind spots, a variety of accidents can be caused by a failure to observe someone in the No Zones. Some of the most common types of blind spot accidents are:
- Rear-end collisions
- Sideswipe accidents
- Underride accidents
- Override accidents
If you or a loved one was seriously hurt or killed in a Las Vegas truck accident, it’s important to talk to an experienced lawyer who can discuss your legal options during such a traumatic time. Truck accident claims can result in large settlements and verdicts, but getting started on the claim quickly is vital to ensure that valuable evidence is preserved.
Blind Spot Accident Statistics
Here are some statistics about blind spot truck accidents:
- Of the 4,862 fatal truck crashes that occurred nationwide in a recent year, the most common initial point of impact was the front of the truck, accounting for 59 percent of all crashes.
- In nearly half of all truck accidents that resulted in injuries, the initial point of impact was also the front of the truck.
- The second-most common initial point of impact for both fatal truck crashes and injury crashes was the rear of the truck. There were 920 fatal crashes in which a car rear-ended a truck and 26,000 similar crashes in which someone was injured.
Who Is At Fault After a Truck Accident Caused by a Blind Spot?
Blind spot accidents generally center on some form of driver error. In most truck blind spot accidents, the car hit by the truck bears minimal responsibility for the crash, except in cases where a car was following too closely behind a truck. Even then, however, the truck driver may have been acting aggressively and may then bear the fault for the accident.
The other party that is commonly liable in blind-spot crashes is the truck driver’s employer. Trucking companies are responsible for making sure their drivers adhere to safety regulations, aren’t engaging in risky driving behaviors, and are adequately trained to handle such large vehicles. If the trucking company failed in any of these ways, they could be partially liable for the crash.
How Can THE702FIRM Injury Attorneys Help Me?
If you’re recovering from a truck blind spot crash, you’re in no shape to wage a major legal battle on your own. While you rest and recuperate, the Las Vegas truck accident lawyers at THE702FIRM Injury Attorneys can begin gathering evidence to build your case. We’ll also handle all the necessary legal communication on your behalf, including opening negotiations for a settlement with the insurance company(s) for all liable parties in the case.
As we negotiate, we’ll also be preparing your case for court should that become necessary. When you hire our firm, rest assured that we won’t rest until we bring the parties responsible for your injuries to justice.
Want to know more about how we can help you with your truck blind spot accident case? Get your free case review today by calling our office or visiting our contact page.