What are Truck Underride Guards?
Truck accidents often result in serious, sometimes fatal, injuries for victims. When drivers of large tractor-trailers cause accidents, they leave victims with exorbitant medical costs and critical injuries. But when you’re seeking to file a claim, it’s important to gather everything you need to win. Sometimes a driver’s trucking company may ultimately be to blame for these unfortunate wrecks.
If you’ve sustained injuries in a truck accident in Arizona, contact the Phoenix auto accident attorneys at ELG. Our team of accident lawyers is here to help. While not all truck accidents can be avoided, there are a few tips to keep in mind when it comes to trucking company negligence and filing a successful claim.
What are Truck Underride Guards?
Before filing a claim, it’s important to know more about the safety features of most trucks. A truck underride guard is a large, metal panel that acts as a bumper. Companies attach these guards to the rear and the side of most 18-wheelers. These guards prevent smaller passenger vehicles from slipping under the truck in an accident.
These underride guards are safety equipment that companies add to tractor-trailers and other large commercial trucks that don’t come equipped with them to protect other drivers. Because these pieces of equipment keep a vehicle from going under the truck, they turn a fatal crash into something more minor, akin to a rear-end crash. Without these side and rear underride guards, the driver and front-seat passengers of your average sedan or similar vehicle are likely to be crushed and killed.
Truck Company Safety Regulations
Underride guards and other safety regulations are vital for keeping other drivers on the road safe. And when trucking companies turn a blind eye to inexperienced or reckless drivers, failed inspections and faulty maintenance on vehicles are more likely. Proper inspections and truck maintenance are essential to prevent mechanical failure. But trucking companies that are already negligent in hiring may fail to follow state laws and standards.
For example, a company should check their trucks’ brakes frequently. Large commercial trucks already have a longer stopping distance, so it’s vital that brakes are in the best possible condition. A trucking company may discover braking defects when routinely inspecting the truck, along with other items that may need replacement. And a negligent trucking company may forego addressing these mechanical issues to save money, allowing drivers to operate trucks with faulty brakes or worn-down tires.
Trucking companies must adhere to maintenance demands. Truck companies that don’t follow laws are more likely to cause accidents but are usually liable and responsible for damages.
Truck Accidents in Arizona
Noncompliance with federal regulations is responsible for a large number of truck accidents nationwide. For example, some trucking regulations in the United States require that a trucking company provide standard times for rest, sleep, and breaks for their drivers. And depending on a driver’s weekly hours, they must have downtime to rest and step away from their vehicle so their lack of sleep doesn’t cause a truck accident.
Fatigued truck drivers can cause serious accidents on the road due to their drowsiness.
Furthermore, drowsy driving results in impaired judgment and slower reaction time. When truck drivers operating heavy loads react to hazards on the road too slowly, they’re at a higher risk for causing a serious collision. Many times, trucking companies are responsible for driver fatigue. In order to boost profits and fulfill deadlines, companies may force drivers to ignore federally mandated guidelines. A trucking company may be liable for damages in that case.
In Arizona, trucks must be properly loaded, per Arizona regulations on trucks. Properly loaded trucks may require measuring by authorities, who also recheck all straps and equipment. If a company doesn’t balance their tractor-trailers, the truck can roll or the equipment can fall. Improper loads can cause large trucks to jackknife, resulting in a serious accident. Oftentimes, these accidents mean serious injuries or even death in catastrophic cases.
Truck Accident Attorney in Arizona
Even the best drivers can’t always avoid truck accidents. If you’re injured or your vehicle is damaged in a truck accident, contact our Phoenix truck accident attorneys at ELG. Due to the nature of truck accidents and the negligent actions of many truck companies, victims must safeguard their legal rights after serious truck accidents. Call us at (623) 877-3600 for a free consultation and legal representation from our compassionate, knowledgeable attorneys today.