Rear-End Crash Due to a Truck's Failure to Brake
Accidents caused by a vehicle striking the rear of another vehicle are typically referred to as rear-end accidents. Our Kansas City truck accident lawyer knows firsthand how common rear-end crashes are in Missouri and Kansas. Rear-end accidents account for roughly one-third of the car crashes each year in the United States.
There are roughly 1.7 million rear-end crashes each year, causing over 500,000 injuries and 1,700 deaths. During 2017, there were over 33,000 accidents involving a large truck rear-ending a passenger vehicle. Thousands of people are killed and injured each year in large truck accidents, including accidents caused by a failure to brake.
Causes of Failure to Brake in Truck Accidents
As with other rear-end crashes, driver error is the most common cause of truck rear-end crashes. Mechanical failure and poor weather conditions are other causes, but most large truck rear-end crashes occur because the driver failed to brake because of a preventable error.
Common reasons for truck rear-end accidents include:
- Distracted driving, including texting while driving, reading, reaching for objects, eating, grooming, and programming the GPS
- Tailgating and following too closely for conditions
- Reckless driving and aggressive driving
- Speeding and failing to follow traffic laws
- Driver fatigue and drowsy driving
- Inadequate headlights or defective truck lights
- Poor weather conditions
- Brake failure or other mechanical failures due to poor maintenance or missed inspections
- Impaired driving (drugged driving and drunk driving)
- Other driver error, such as pulling in front of a truck without sufficient clearance or warning
All drivers have a duty to maintain a safe following distance between their vehicle and the vehicle they are following. Even though other factors may contribute to the cause of a rear-end truck crash, the truck driver may also be partially at-fault for the collision. If so, the driver and the truck company might be liable for a portion of the damages caused by the accident.
Why are Rear-end Accidents With Trucks More Dangerous?
The difference in the vehicles type and size contributes to the severity of an accident involving a large truck and a passenger vehicle. Of the 4,761 people killed in large truck accidents in 2017, 72 percent of the individuals were occupants of other vehicles.
Truck rear-end crashes are more catastrophic than rear-end crashes involving only passenger cars because the force of the impact of a large truck is greater because of its size and weight. A passenger car striking another car from behind may only cause damage to the rear of the vehicle. However, when a large truck strikes a passenger vehicle from behind, it can easily crush the entire vehicle. It can also shove the vehicle into another vehicle or object, causing additional damage and risk of injury.
Also, the design of the vehicles increases the risk of serious injury and death in large truck rear-end crashes. The bumper and frame of a commercial truck are higher than the standard passenger vehicle. When a semi-truck rear-ends a passenger vehicle, the frame and bumper can enter the passenger vehicle’s occupant compartments increasing the risk of traumatic injuries and death.
What Should You Do After a Rear-End Truck Accident?
Proving that the truck driver, truck company, or another party was responsible and at fault for the truck’s failure to brake is essential for recovering damages after a rear-end crash. Even though it is assumed that most rear-end accidents are the fault of the driver in the rear vehicle, you must still have evidence to prove that the large truck caused the rear-end crash. Investigating the cause of the truck accident and gathering evidence is crucial in proving fault and liability.
If you were injured in truck rear end collision with a car in Missouri or Kansas, you likely have a lot of questions. You can read answers from our Kansas City truck accident attorney to the most commonly asked questions. However, first and foremost, your priorities after a rear-end truck accident need to be both your health and the truck accident investigation.
Accidents involving large trucks or commercial vehicles are complicated. The trucking company and its insurance provider take steps to minimize their liability for the accident. Vital evidence that is not required to be preserved could be lost or destroyed. You need to ensure that this evidence is preserved and recovered.
However, because you need to focus on recovering from your injuries, you need help with the truck accident investigation. You also need someone who understands the complexities of a truck accident case and what to do to preserve evidence, determine the cause of the rear-end collision, and identify the responsible parties. You need an experienced Kansas City truck accident attorney.
Call an Experienced Kansas City Truck Accident Attorney for Help
Handling a rear-end truck accident can be overwhelming. The truck company and the insurance company have a team of professionals that handle the claim, including accident investigators, insurance adjusters, claims representatives, industry experts, and defense lawyers. You do not want to go up against this team alone. You need a team of your own that has the skills, resources, knowledge, and experience to protect you.
The Law Office of Kevin J. McManus represents victims of large truck accidents in Missouri and Kansas. Our Kansas City truck accident law firm is here for you and your family when you need a legal team to fight for fair and just compensation after a truck accident.
Call 816-203-0143 for a free consultation with a Kansas City truck accident attorney today.