Due to their substantial size and weight, commercial trucks have specific federal and state regulations with which they must comply to ensure safety on the roadways. In many cases, accidents between large trucks and passenger vehicles occur in intersections due to the wide turning radius of a commercial truck, causing them to make large, wide turns. In other cases, a truck driver negligently operated the commercial truck, either speeding through the intersection or failing to come to a complete stop.
If you suffered injuries due to an accident in an intersection involving a commercial truck, you may want to learn how a Los Angeles accidents in intersection lawyer can help you uphold your legal rights. Contact our legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 794-0444 for a free no-obligation consultation.
Truck drivers should always receive specialized training regarding how to operate a large commercial truck safely in all situations. California Vehicle Code § 15250 requires truck drivers to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) to ensure that they understand how best to safely navigate such a large vehicle in a wide variety of circumstances on the roadways.
Difficulty Involved in Wide Turns
One of the most complicated skills that a truck driver must learn is how to turn in an intersection. These large commercial trucks simply cannot make the same types of nimble maneuvers that a passenger vehicle can within an intersection. Therefore, when a large truck needs to make a turn at an intersection, they may need to swing the trailer of their vehicle either partially or completely into another lane to complete the turn successfully.
Types of Turns
When a truck driver makes a large, wide turn, they must ensure that they check their entire surroundings for other vehicles, pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists. Both right and left turns can prove challenging for truck drivers depending on the specific intersection and their level of experience.
In most cases, large commercial truck drivers should not attempt to make a U-turn in an intersection, as it would require multiple lanes free of any motorists or pedestrians. Commercial truck drivers never receive training to make U-turns due to the danger involved. If a truck driver needs to reverse their truck for any reason, the truck driver should either wait until they can find a large enough parking lot to do so or simply drive around the block.
Negligence and Turns in Intersections
In some cases, when a truck fails to make a wide turn in an intersection safely, it is due to the negligence of the truck driver failing to carefully ensure that they had the room to make the maneuver and that it was safe to do so. If a truck driver is driving while fatigued, distracted, or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they may be liable for any injuries suffered as a result of an accident.
If you suffered injuries in an accident with a commercial truck in the middle of an intersection where the truck driver might have been negligent, you may find it worthwhile to contact a Los Angeles accidents in intersection lawyer. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to discuss your case for free with a member of our team.
Failing to Stop
The Federal Highway Administration reports that over 50% of traffic accidents occur at or near intersections. When a large commercial vehicle fails to stop completely at an intersection, the potential for catastrophic injury is exponential for other motorists. Most accidents in intersections are either T-bone accidents or head-on collisions, which are the most dangerous and deadly types of accidents.
There are several reasons that a truck driver may fail to fully stop at an intersection and cause an accident with a motorist or pedestrian, including the following:
- Driving while distracted (texting and driving, visiting with a passenger, checking the GPS for directions, etc.).
- Poor light or weather conditions (failing to maintain a proper speed for the time of day or weather to slow down to ensure safe operation of the commercial truck).
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Driving while fatigued (the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates the hours-of-service rules that commercial truck drivers must follow to avoid driver fatigue).
- Hazardous or dangerous roadways, including gravel and potholes.
- Mechanical failures due to failure to ensure proper maintenance of the commercial truck.
- Mechanical failures due to manufacturing defects and flaws (e.g., brake or tire failure).
- Failing to obey traffic regulations, such as the inability to slow down and stop at an intersection due to speeding or reckless operation of the commercial truck.
- Failure of a governmental agency to post or repost a roadway sign after the removal or theft of the sign.
For a free legal consultation with an accidents in intersection lawyer serving Los Angeles, call (800) 794-0444
Statute of Limitations
According to CCP § 335.1, you have only two years from the date of the accident involving a truck to file a claim to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering. While this may seem like a long time, the process of conducting an independent investigation and determining liability can take a substantial amount of time.
The amount of records needed from trucking companies regarding logbooks, maintenance schedules, and manufactured parts is extensive. Conducting negotiations with insurance companies also takes a considerable amount of time.
Additionally, if an investigation discovers that any part of the accident is the fault of a governmental agency (such as failure to replace a stop sign), the statute of limitations is much shorter. Therefore, you may want to start a personal injury claim for your injuries and losses as soon as possible.
Los Angeles Accidents in Intersection Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Los Angeles Accidents in Intersection Lawyer
If you were in an accident in the middle of a Los Angeles intersection involving a commercial truck, you might face astronomical medical bills, ongoing medical treatments, lifelong injuries, pain and suffering, and lost wages due to an inability to return to work.
You might want to visit with a Los Angeles accidents in intersections lawyer to go over your legal rights and consider your next steps. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 794-0444 for a free consultation with a member of our team.