There are many different types of large trucks on the road that cause underride truck accidents in Missouri. We handle Missouri under-ride truck accidents for semi trucks, delivery trucks, garbage trucks, fire trucks, cement trucks, dump trucks, refrigerator trucks, tanker trucks, coal-carrying dump trucks and landscaping trucks, among others.
Missouri underride truck accidents are a particularly deadly type of trucking accident, whereby a smaller vehicle such as a passenger car, motorcycle or bicycle collides with a commercial truck and gets trapped underneath the truck. Large trucks often have a high clearance, which may be almost the height of a passenger vehicle. Missouri under-ride truck accidents happen with a smaller vehicle traveling to the rear of the truck. When two like-sized vehicles collide, the impact will stop the two. When a smaller vehicle collides with a commercial truck that results in an underride truck accident, only the upper part of the smaller vehicle will come into contact with the truck. The roof or upper part of the car can be torn off while the bulk of the car will continue moving forward and become caught beneath the trailer.
Missouri underride truck accidents frequently result in serious injuries. The majority of people who sustain injuries in underride trucking accidents in Missouri are the drivers of the other vehicles. Most truck drivers escape Missouri underride truck accidents unharmed. If you or a family member were harmed by an underride trucking accident, contact our lawyers for a free consultation. Our team of expert Missouri truck accident lawyers is committed to pursuing justice on behalf of individuals and families harmed by underride truck accidents in Missouri.
Missouri underride truck accidents result from a variety of scenarios on the roadway. Contributing factors include aggressive driving, driver inattention, weather and road conditions, and lack of maintenance to the truck. Rarely does only one factor alone lead to an underride truck accident in Missouri; most of the time, our lawyers find that several different factors were to blame.
Aggressive driving is one cause of underride truck accidents in Missouri. Aggressive driving tactics that may contribute to a Missouri underride truck accident include speeding, failure to leave ample following distance for braking purposes, aggressive passing, lane changing, swerving, and tailgating. Commercial truck operators are professional drivers; as such, they must obey safety laws and operate their vehicles in a conservative and responsible manner. Making driving decisions that violate safety regulations and that can be deemed aggressive is punishable by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Causing an underride truck accident in Missouri by driving aggressively is a very serious infraction for a commercial driver. Our lawyers interview witnesses to determine whether aggressive driving may have been a contributing factor in a Missouri underride truck accident.
Driver fatigue and driver distraction result in a wide variety of commercial truck accidents in Missouri, including underride truck accidents. Tired or sleepy drivers, or those sending text messages or talking on a cell phone, are prone to making poor judgments on the road. Driving too fast, following too close, or failing to maintain important safety features such as brake lights are driver behaviors that may result in Missouri underride truck accidents. Driver fatigue in particular is one circumstance that lawyers frequently trace back to the trucking company. Trucking companies have been found to exert tremendous schedule pressure on their drivers, going so far as to encourage them to spend more hours on the road than are legally permissible. Trucking companies may also require their drivers to report back via cellular phone, which has been proven to be more dangerous than driving with a blood-alcohol content at the commercial vehicle legal limit of .04%.
Driving a fully-loaded commercial truck requires total attention on the road, the controls, the changing weather conditions and surrounding traffic. Any less than full attention endangers other vehicles and may lead to an underride trucking accident in Missouri.
Even with perfect attention to the road and surrounding conditions, a commercial truck may cause a Missouri underride truck accident due to a failure of the trucking company and the driver to maintain the vehicle’s safety equipment. Some underride truck accidents in Missouri could be avoided if truck brakes and tires were given regular maintenance and were properly balanced. Other Missouri underride truck accidents result from a failure to display adequate reflectors or lights in order to warn other motorists of the truck’s presence. Finally, all trucks are required to have underride guards in order to physically stop a smaller vehicle before it moves beneath the truck and prevent a collision from turning into an underride truck accident. If the underride guard is inadequate or damaged, or if it is not properly attached, it may be completely ineffective and the collision may result in an underride truck accident. Our lawyers gather information regarding vehicle maintenance and equipment problems.
In order to prevent Missouri underride truck accidents from occurring when a car collides with the rear of a commercial truck, rear underride bars have been developed. These bars are mounted on the bottom edge of the trailer, and extend toward the ground to prevent a moving car from riding under the truck. These guards were first required in the 1950’s, at which time the concept of them was better than the actual product. For many years, these rear bumper guards were categorically not strong enough or low enough to prevent many underride truck accidents. Even today, some trucks in Missouri still have defective or inadequate guards that fail to prevent all Missouri underride truck accidents. This is a key factor our lawyers research.
In order to be most effective, rear bumper guards must be very strong and firmly attached. They must be able to stop cars moving at high speeds from ramming into the rear of a stopped truck. To prevent underride truck accidents with very small cars, they must extend low to the ground, allowing only 16 inches of clearance. A significant percentage of Missouri underride truck accidents involve the rear corners of a truck, so the guard must extend around the rear corners. Guards that are poorly attached, that are not low enough to the ground, do not extend around the corners, or simply are not very strong, are ineffective in preventing all underride truck accidents in Missouri. Defective, inadequate or loose underride guards are to blame for many underride trucking accidents today. With an adequate rear guard, a potentially deadly Missouri underride truck accident will be minimized to a rear-end accident.
The common use of rear guards has been in practice since the 1950s. There is no excuse for Missouri underride truck accidents related to a faulty rear guard. Missouri underride truck accidents can still occur, but are far less likely with proper guards. When they do take place, Missouri underride truck accident lawyers will look to see whether the underride guard was adequate, well-maintained and properly attached. Failure to utilize, install and maintain and underride guard is a form of negligence. Regardless of the other causes of the accident – be it poor weather conditions, aggressive driving, or road defects – a Missouri underride truck accident is usually preventable with adequate safety equipment.
Our lawyers are committed to pursuing justice on behalf of individuals and families who have been harmed in a Missouri underride truck accident. We believe you deserve a proactive and experienced truck accident lawyer to represent your case. An experienced lawyer will work as an advocate for you and your family, and will carefully examine potential causes that may have contributed to your Missouri underride truck accident.
Trucking company lawyers and insurance companies that represent trucking companies may attempt to blame drivers of smaller vehicles for underride trucking accidents for driving too close to a truck. However, many different circumstances may shave coalesced to create the conditions that caused your underride truck accident. Rarely can an underride accident be pinned to a solitary cause. An experienced truck accident attorney will research the intricacies of your case to learn the true underlying causes. Going through the aftermath of a serious underride truck accident without a strong advocate can cause even more trauma. Having a strong advocate will help you achieve justice in your case and push for the further regulation of commercial trucks in order to prevent similar underride truck accidents from happening to others.
The Onder Law Firm's Missouri Truck Accident Lawyers handle underride truck accident cases ranging from local delivery trucks to long-haul semi trucks throughout the entire state. Our Missouri attorneys handling underride truck accident cases understand the trucking industry, what causes truck accidents to happen and how to manage your Missouri truck accident lawsuit in the best possible way.