Commercial vehicles are all around you on the highway, and it's no surprise that they are involved in many collisions each year. These vehicles have large blind spots, and drivers can be fairly young and inexperienced.
Despite that, with a booming economy, commercial vehicle use will continue to grow and put other drivers at risk. If you're involved in a crash with a commercial vehicle in Tennessee, you should know what to expect moving forward.
Some vehicles are independently owned
Some vehicles are owned by independent contractors. This means that a company may not be liable for the driver's actions, and you'll have to directly make a claim against the driver. If their insurance isn't high enough to cover your losses, you won't be able to seek a claim against the person who hired them, in most cases, since they aren't responsible for the driver's independent business.
Other times, the vehicle will be part of a business's fleet. In these cases, the driver won't be directly responsible in the same way, and you can make a claim against the company's insurance. If the insurance isn't high enough, there's a potential to sue the company for further compensation and to hold them liable for failing to carry enough insurance if they're in violation of state law.
Truck accidents are more likely to cause serious injuries
Trucks, when fully loaded, can weigh more than 80,000 pounds. A standard car weighs about 3,000 pounds, which shows why there's such a high risk of injuries if the two collide. There is simply no way to eliminate the risk of an injury when 80,000 pounds and 3,000 pounds hit, even with the best safety technology.
If you're traveling around a commercial vehicle, give yourself plenty of space to maneuver. The drivers may be paying attention, but even those who are watching the road can make mistakes that result in crashes.
You should always remain a few cars' distance away from a truck, to the front or rear. Slow down over time instead of slamming on your brakes if a commercial truck is behind you. This will help give the driver plenty of time to stop, and you will have a safer stop yourself. If you are hit, talk to an attorney about the circumstances while building your case.