After a car crash, police officers will have to investigate to determine fault. The insurance companies of the drivers involved in the crash may also conduct their own investigations. Information about what causes the crash will become part of the public record and help analysts make sense of modern traffic.
As with most other crashes, commercial collisions involving semitrucks might be the fault of the driver in the big truck or someone else on the road. Overall, federal statistics show that truck drivers are the ones at fault for roughly 55% of all commercial vehicle crashes.
When a big truck is the one ultimately at fault for the crash, how often is the driver of the vehicle the one ultimately responsible for what happened?
The vast majority of commercial crashes stem from driver mistakes
According to federal data about the causes of big truck crashes, probably 87% of big truck crashes are the direct responsibility of the commercial driver. Some of the common issues that cause crashes include distraction, inadequate surveillance and even medical emergencies.
Drivers who have a heart attack or stroke could lose control of their vehicles. Drivers talking on the phone or texting could rear-end another vehicle and cause a major wreck. Drivers making bad decisions about how to maneuver or how fast to drive could directly contribute to crash risk.
The 13% of crashes not attributed to the driver stem from two main causes. Roughly 3% of big truck crashes are the result of environmental issues, possibly related to road conditions or weather. The remaining 10% involve vehicle issues, such as inadequate maintenance or even issues with the distribution of weight in the trailer.
What role does fault play in a commercial crash claim?
As with most other collisions, responsibility for the wreck directly results in financial obligations to someone who gets hurt or suffers property damage. However, in commercial crashes, there will usually be a commercial insurance policy protecting against major losses.
In rare cases where a driver’s employer is at fault due to vehicle maintenance or company policies, then the opportunity for a civil lawsuit may exist. Learning more about fault and the details of what led to a trucking crash can help you decide how to seek justice for yourself.