Semi-trucks make up a significant portion of the traffic on Tennessee's roads. These massive vehicles can be intimidating, and for good reason. Their sheer size can prove deadly in a car accident, as their increased weight can crush a passenger vehicle like a soda can in the blink of an eye. Therefore, regulations are in place to ensure that truckers operate their vehicles safely. However, despite these regulatory attempts, far too often truckers act negligently, thereby putting innocent motorists in harm's way.
One way this happens is when truckers fail to give themselves enough distance to come to a safe stop. A passenger vehicle can be 18 feet long and weigh as much as 4,000 pounds, but a semi-truck can be 65 feet long and weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. Therefore, a big-rig needs a significantly greater distance to come to a safe stop compared to a passenger vehicle. When traveling at 65 miles per hour, for example, a car will only need about 316 feet to safely stop, whereas a semi-truck traveling at that same speed will need 525 feet.
Truckers who fail to account for this increased distance can cause a devastating accident that leaves individuals with serious injuries. In the worst cases, these motorists are killed. The risk of these truck accidents can be increased when a trucker is distracted, tired, intoxicated or otherwise negligent, as this can decrease reaction time and increase the distance necessary to come to a safe stop.
Those who have been injured in a truck accident attributable to a trucker's negligence may want to take legal action. Doing so may result in the imposition of liability and the recovery of much needed compensation. To learn more about how to use the facts at hand to build a compelling personal injury case, truck and car accident victims can seek professional advice.