Blind Spot Truck Accidents
There are several areas immediately around the average tractor-trailer where the operator does not have a clear line of sight, even with the help of side mirrors and modern collision detection systems. However, truck drivers still have a responsibility to check the blind spots before turning or changing lanes, as the accidents that may stem from failure to do so often have severe consequences.
If you were struck by a commercial truck driver who did not notice you in his or her blind spot, you may have grounds for civil litigation against the driver or employer and should seek legal representation. Effectively seeking recovery for all injuries and losses that can come from blind spot truck accidents generally requires assistance from an experienced truck accident attorney who has handled similar cases before.
Establishing Liability for a Blind Spot Wreck
Almost every motor vehicle has blind spots immediately beyond its front and rear bumpers, just below and behind the driver’s side door, and along the right side of the vehicle. Given how long and wide tractor-trailers often are, these blind spots are significantly larger on these and other commercial vehicles, stretching as far as 20 feet ahead of the front bumper, 30 feet behind the rear bumper, and more than 50 feet along the full length of the cab and trailer’s right side.
These blind spots are big enough to hide an entire commuter car or even multiple other vehicles, so regularly checking blind spots is a key element of the duty of care truck drivers owe to other people with whom they share the road. If a driver recklessly or carelessly “breaches” this duty and causes a crash as a direct result, he—or his employer or insurance provider—could be on the hook for ensuing economic and non-economic damages, including medical expenses, vehicle damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Civil recovery after blind spot truck accidents is not as simple as accusing a truck driver of irresponsible behavior and collecting a check. An experienced truck accident attorney can provide critical assistance collecting and presenting evidence of negligence like traffic or dashboard camera footage, eyewitness testimony, police reports, and even testimony from accident reconstruction experts.
The Potential Risk of Comparative Fault
Just like truck drivers, commuter car operators have an implicit legal responsibility to act reasonably on the road, and part of that responsibility involves being aware of other vehicles’ blind spots and not driving within them as much as possible. Accordingly, there are circumstances in which a druver could be found partially responsible for a blind spot truck crash, which could significantly inhibit his or her ability to recover compensation.
Under the modified comparative fault system codified in Ohio Revised Code §2315.33, any percentage of fault attributed to a truck wreck victim would result in a proportional reduction of his or her final damage award. Furthermore, any plaintiff in any personal injury claim found more than 50 percent at fault for his own injuries is ineligible to seek compensation for that incident in particular.
Speak with an Attorney about a Blind Spot Truck Accident Claim
Blind spot truck accidents cause immense harm to numerous drivers and their passengers every year, and they sometimes even result in permanent disabilities and disfigurements. Whether you are dealing with minor injuries or catastrophic losses, civil recovery with the help of a Chardon attorney may be essential to ensure you can live a comfortable and productive life after such an incident.
If you were caught up in this kind of wreck recently, you should strongly consider reaching out to a qualified lawyer to review your legal options. Call Tittle & Perlmuter today to schedule a free consultation.