Due to their weight and size, commercial trucks and 18-wheelers need significant distance to come to a complete stop without hitting another vehicle. When they are overloaded, they need to allow for even more stopping distance. Truck drivers are supposed to be properly trained in judging stopping distances so that they can leave a necessary, safe gap between them and a vehicle in front of them. If they are not properly trained, or if they misjudge the distance, the result may be a devastating crash with a much smaller vehicle or pedestrian. Our Memphis truck accident lawyers represent people who have been injured due to truck driver misjudgments of stopping distance. At Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz, as the largest Tennessee-based personal injury firm, we have more than 30 attorneys with excellent credentials and 100 staff members. Our firm serves victims throughout Tennessee, as well as in Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Missouri.Holding Drivers Accountable for Crashes Caused by Inadequate Stopping Distance
Truck drivers must leave enough room to react to the inevitable surprises on the road, such as a car cutting them off or a stopped line of cars. Big rigs and tractor-trailers do not necessarily come to a complete stop as soon as the brakes are pressed. They can still travel for a while from the moment that the brakes are hit to when the truck actually stops. A passenger car also needs some room to stop, but a fully loaded truck or an overloaded truck needs to allow for much more stopping distance.
All interstate truck drivers are required to use reasonable care based on traffic and weather conditions, in addition to following Tennessee laws and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. When a truck driver carelessly fails to leave the appropriate space, they may cause serious injuries or even death. In many cases, a jury will find that a truck driver breached their duty to use reasonable care by failing to leave sufficient space to stop. In some cases, a trucking company that employs a negligent truck driver may be indirectly or directly liable for the accident. A trucking company may be held vicariously liable when a driver's failure to leave a sufficient stopping distance occurs while they are in the course and scope of employment. A trucking company may also be directly responsible, such as when it has failed to train a driver in how to safely stop the vehicle and how to leave enough room to stop without crashing.
Sometimes there is enough stopping distance, but only if the brakes on the truck are properly functioning. When defective truck brakes are the cause of an accident, it may be appropriate to bring a claim for inadequate maintenance. Under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations, trucking companies must follow specific guidelines regarding maintenance and repairs to their trucks.Explore Your Options With a Truck Accident Lawyer in Memphis
Truck accidents may have multiple causes. Unfortunately, truck drivers and trucking companies may intentionally destroy, alter, or hide evidence in order to avoid paying accident victims’ damages. It is important to retain a motor vehicle collision attorney who has experience in these cases and understands how to prevent and respond to potential spoliation of evidence. If you are injured due to a driver's failure to provide an adequate stopping distance, you should contact the experienced Memphis truck accident attorneys at Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz. We represent individuals and families in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, and Kentucky, including in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Jonesboro, Little Rock, Jackson, Meridian, Tupelo, Columbus, Grenada, Starkville, Oxford, Hayti, and Caruthersville. Contact our office toll-free by calling 800-LAW-4004 or by completing our online form to schedule your free consultation. Let us explain to you why NST is the way to go.