Blocking accidents happen most often when smaller vehicles collide with large trucks that were inappropriately stopped and the aftermath can be severe.
When a smaller passenger vehicle strikes a stationary 18-wheeler or big rig truck, the results are often catastrophic. In 2013, 5 percent of fatal crashes involving large trucks and passenger vehicles occurred when large trucks were stopped or parked in traffic lanes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Although commercial trucks are required to have reflective tape and use certain lighting equipment, these types of accidents continue to occur. Because blocking accidents typically involve a passenger vehicle striking the rear end of a large truck, underride is more likely to occur.
Underride accidents occur when a passenger vehicle collides with a tractor-trailer and slides beneath the side or back end structure of a truck or trailer. Underride accidents tend to results in more severe injuries and can often be fatal.
If you or a loved one was involved in an accident with a semi-truck, contact the Houston trucking accident lawyers at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. today at 281-283-8500 to find out how we can help you initiate a claim to recover compensation for your losses.
Blocking Accidents Explained
Blocking accidents occur when a tractor-trailer or semi-trailer is struck by another vehicle while stopped or parked in the roadway or on the shoulder. Blocking accidents can involve any of the following situations:
- A passenger vehicle strikes a truck that is blocking a traffic lane while attempting to back-up or make a turn
- A passenger vehicle rear-ends a truck that is parked or stopped in the roadway
- A passenger vehicle runs off the roadway and strikes a truck parked or stopped on the shoulder
One major issue for commercial truck drivers is parking shortages. On average, there are more than 173,000 trucks per day that need a place to park during their trip. According to a study by the Federal Highway Administration (FHA), most states do not have adequate parking for commercial trucks.
Truck parking shortages are a national safety concern for two reasons:
- Fatigued truckers may continue to drive if they cannot locate a place to stop for rest. Based on the survey data from the FHA, 75 percent of truck drivers said that it was difficult to find safe parking when they needed rest.
- Truckers may decide to park at unsafe locations, which could endanger passing motorists. According to the FHA survey results, 90 percent of respondents said that they struggled to find safe and available parking during night hours.
Nearly half of the states surveyed by FHA reported that truck drivers were forced to park on freeway exit/entrance ramps and shoulders of highways. When trucks park in unsafe areas, such as on the shoulder of the road, entrance and exit ramps, or vacant lots, it can increase the likelihood of a crash.
Common Causes of Blocking Accidents
Blocking accidents can cause significant injury and damage to vehicles. Common causes of blocking accidents include:
- Driver inattention
- Poorly marked truck
- Malfunctioning or poorly maintained equipment
- Unsafe parking location
- Failure to signal or yield
- Driver fatigue
- Impaired driving
- Adverse road or weather conditions
- Failure to use hazards or reflective triangles to alert passing motorists to stopped or parked vehicle
- Unsecured cargo which forces the driver to pull over on the side of the roadway
How Our Skilled Attorneys Can Help You
If you have suffered an injury in a collision with a parked or stopped truck, you may be weighing your options. The Houston truck accident attorneys at The Krist Law Firm, P.C. have over 27 years of experience litigating truck accident claims and securing the maximum compensation possible for our clients.
Through a truck accident claim, it may be possible to receive compensation for past and future:
- Medical costs
- Loss of earning capacity
- Physical pain
- Physical limitations
- Mental anguish
When you work with our firm, you can expect exceptional client service, knowledgeable and professional legal advocacy, and detailed attention to your case. We will fight to achieve the best possible result and are committed to helping you obtain the resources necessary to rebuild your life.
Call us today at 281-283-8500 for a free, no-risk case evaluation.