Every motor vehicle has blind spots around its exterior where the driver cannot easily see other cars, bicyclists, or pedestrians near them. Commercial trucks have especially large areas of limited visibility that, if not accounted for, can substantially increase the chance of a crash occurring.
18-wheeler drivers have an implicit legal responsibility to be aware of where their vehicle is and what obstacles are around it at all times. Any failure to uphold this responsibility that directly leads to a wreck could give rise to civil litigation. Following a blind spot truck accident in Ballwin, guidance from a trucking crash attorney could make a tremendous difference in someone’s chances of successful financial recovery.
The blind spots for commercial rigs are in roughly the same areas as those for standard passenger cars: in front of the front bumper, behind the back bumper, and diagonally back along the left and right sides of the vehicle. 18-wheeler operators sit much higher above the road than the average driver and trucks can stretch up to 80 feet long. Because of this, trucker’s blind spots are much larger, reaching as much as 20 to 30 feet out from the trailer.
Large side mirrors can help minimize the impact that areas of limited visibility have on a trucker, but if the driver is not paying attention, collisions are still likely. If an 18-wheeler driver gets in a wreck with another vehicle in the area because they did not check their blind spots, their behavior could constitute negligence, potentially justifying civil action by anyone injured as a result.
Depending on the circumstances, truck drivers involved in a blind spot crash may not be the best parties to name as defendants in a claim. This is because they may not have the financial resources necessary to cover all losses the wreck caused.
Instead, it could be in the better interest of the claimant to hold the trucking company responsible. It is often possible to hold trucking companies liable for negligence by their employees under the respondeat superior doctrine. This doctrine states that companies are liable for their employees’ actions while on the job. These companies usually have the finances to pay for someone’s losses in the event of an accident.
It is also possible for individuals injured in local blind spot truck crashes to be found partially liable for their own damages. For example, if the plaintiff irresponsibly drove inside an 18-wheeler’s blind spot for an extended amount of time.
In this situation, a civil court would have the authority to reduce the value of a plaintiff’s final damage award by whatever percentage of total fault they bear for their injuries. If they are filing for $100,000 worth of damages and are found 20 percent at fault for their injuries, their total compensation will be reduced to $80,000.
Successfully pursuing compensation after a blind spot truck accident in Ballwin can be challenging without representation from a legal team who has handled cases of this unique nature before. A seasoned attorney could explain your rights and discuss options for seeking financial recovery during an initial consultation.
Unlike at large firms, our attorneys have the ability to pursue an individualized approach with all of the people we work with. Call our office today to set up an initial consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.