New Jersey Truck Accident Attorneys
New Jersey is home to several major trucking corridors, including the I-287 and the I-80, as well as the New Jersey Turnpike. Three hundred-fifty million tons of freight move annually over the 2,800 miles of highway and 420 miles of interstate crisscrossing the state. While this truck traffic is an important element of the economy, there is no question that fully-laden single, double and triple tractor-trailers pose a significant risk of serious personal injury or wrongful death to unfortunate motorists involved in a collision with these behemoths. At De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp, our New Jersey personal injury lawyers work hard to make sure truck accident injury victims and their families are compensated for their injuries to the fullest extent of the law.
Tractor-Trailers Pose Unique Threats to Traffic Safety
The immense size and weight of semi-trucks create unique dangers for the big rigs and the vehicles they share the road with. Because of their size and weight, trucks require additional stopping distance and increased reaction time to respond to traffic conditions. They are also required to make wide, swinging turns that take them out of their lane and sometimes confuse other drivers about their intentions if proper signaling is not used. Additionally, while all vehicles have certain blind spots, a semi has blind spots immediately in front of the cab, behind the trailer, to the left and behind the cab, and to the right and behind the cab for several lanes and several car lengths. Careful drivers will stay out of a truck driver’s blind spots as much as possible, but it is incumbent on the trucker to carefully check all mirrors and signal intentions well in advance to execute a safe turn or lane change.
Reckless Truckers and Trucking Companies Cause Accidents
Truck drivers are under pressure to deliver their freight as quickly as possible, which could lead some truckers to engage in speeding or other reckless or aggressive driving. Even while trying to be safe, truckers may drive longer than is safe. Fatigued drivers have slower reaction times and are at risk of falling asleep at the wheel. The use of stimulants only masks the need for sleep and the underlying fatigue, making drivers less alert than they think they are. All of these factors combine to increase the risk of a serious truck accident.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has adopted regulations which limit the maximum hours of service for truck drivers. Unfortunately, however, the trucking industry has greatly influenced these regulations for their own purposes, so that the allowable hours of service may be longer than is reasonable for safety. For instance, truckers may work 14-hour shifts with 11 hours of driving time in workweeks that are six or seven days long.
Get Help from Experienced New Jersey Truck Accident Lawyers
Because of their size and weight, most trucking accidents cause serious personal injury or wrongful death for the driver and occupants of the passenger vehicle involved in the collision. Accident victims with catastrophic injuries may require extensive rehabilitation and long-term care, which can be prohibitively expensive. The attorneys at De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp understand the complexities involved in truck accidents and the need for a full and fair amount of compensation to deal with the damages caused. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a New Jersey truck accident, contact De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp at 1-844-4MBHURT for a free consultation about how we may be able to help you.