Devastating chain reaction truck crash on Interstate 40 kills four

Truck crashes are common in Tennessee, and are also a problem throughout the entire country, with thousands being injured or killed by trucks each year.

Trucks are a necessary part of the country's economy, and it is not uncommon for people to encounter large tractor-trailers on Tennessee's highways and throughout the U.S. Unfortunately, trucking accidents are also common, taking lives or injuring thousands of people each year. According to Insurance News Net, about 100,000 people are seriously injured in trucking crashes every year, while an additional 4,000 people are killed. These accident rates have increased exponentially since 2009.

Trucking crashes are also a problem in Tennessee. The state Department of Safety and Homeland Security reported 607 large truck crashes in Knox County alone last year. This number was one of the highest out of every county in the state.

Speed, fatigue only two factors of many that can cause trucking crashes

State Farm says there are a variety of factors that are common in large truck accidents that could have been prevented by the truck driver. These include:

  • Alcohol or substance use.
  • Improper cargo weight distribution.
  • Poor vehicle maintenance.
  • Driving unsuitably for weather or road conditions.
  • Distracted driving.

Also, driver fatigue is a major problem for truckers because of most truck drivers' extended work hours. An average work week for truckers can include about 80 hours of driving time. Speed is another common factor for trucking accidents, since it can take a large truck much longer to come to a stop than smaller vehicles.

Speed appeared to have been a factor in a horrific crash on Interstate 40 near Jackson last June. SILive.com reported on the incident in which traffic had slowed because of a previous crash. A freight truck struck a car and caused a chain reaction that included two more tractor-trailers and an additional car. All but one of the vehicles burst into flames and four people were killed. Authorities say they believed the truck driver had been speeding.

Because of a truck's size and speed, truckers can have difficulty maneuvering around nearby traffic, says Edmunds. Common types of truck accidents include an inability to stop in time to avoid a crash; a right-hand turn crash that pins smaller vehicles; and crashes when a truck driver failed to see another vehicle in his or her blind spot.

Contacting an attorney

Truck crashes can be devastating because of the truck's much larger size in proportion to other vehicles. If you or a loved one has been in an accident caused by a negligent, distracted or impaired truck driver, you may be eligible for compensation. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your options.

Keywords: truck accident, crash, injury