Riding in another vehicle’s blind spot — the area around a vehicle that is not directly visible to the driver, even with the use of mirrors — is asking for trouble. That trouble can be even more serious when the blind spot belongs to a truck.
According to statistics, blind spot accidents account for a sizable portion of all vehicle accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that some 840,000 blind spot accidents occur each year in the United States alone. These accidents result in over three hundred fatalities and thousands of injuries annually.
Truck blind spot accidents typically occur due to the large size and design of commercial trucks. One of the most common blind spots for truck drivers is the area directly behind the vehicle, sometimes referred to as the “no-zone.” This blind spot can extend for several car lengths and make it difficult for truck drivers to see vehicles directly behind them.
Truck blind spots, or no-zones, are areas around a truck where the driver’s visibility is limited or completely blocked. These blind spots are much larger than those of a regular passenger vehicle, making them a significant safety concern for both truck drivers and the drivers of other vehicles sharing the road.
The most common blind spots for trucks are located on the right side, directly behind the truck, and in the front of the cab. The right-side blind spot is particularly large, extending from the truck’s side mirrors to the end of the trailer. This means that a vehicle driving alongside the truck on the right may not be visible to the truck driver, making lane changes and merging maneuvers risky.
The blind spot directly behind the truck, also known as the rear blind spot, poses a similar risk. Large trucks have high-mounted side mirrors that block the driver’s view of vehicles directly behind them. This blind spot extends several car lengths, making it difficult for the truck driver to see smaller cars or motorcycles following closely. Other vehicles traveling in this area may also find it challenging to anticipate sudden stops or lane changes by the truck.
Finally, the front blind spot in front of the truck’s cab can obstruct the driver’s view of vehicles or pedestrians directly in front. The long hood of a truck and its elevated position make it challenging for the driver to see objects or obstacles that are low to the ground, such as small cars and pedestrians. This blind spot increases in size the closer the truck is to an intersection or stop sign, making it essential for other road users to be cautious and allow enough space for the truck to maneuver safely.
The most critical blind spot is on the truck’s right side, extending from the side mirror to about halfway down the length of the trailer. This blind spot can make it impossible for the truck driver to see cars, motorcycles, or bicycles driving alongside the truck. This means that if a driver in a smaller vehicle stays in this blind spot for a significant amount of time, they are at risk of being involved in a collision if the truck driver decides to change lanes.
Another dangerous blind spot is directly behind the truck. Due to the truck’s height and size, there is a large area behind the truck where the driver’s vision is blocked, making it impossible for them to see vehicles directly behind them. This creates a potentially deadly situation for smaller vehicles, especially if they tailgate the truck.
If the truck needs to suddenly brake or make an emergency stop, the driver may not be aware of the smaller vehicle’s presence, leading to a catastrophic rear-end collision. Drivers must understand the dangers of truck blind spots and take precautions to avoid these areas when driving near trucks on the road.
One of the primary causes of truck blind spot accidents is that the sheer size and design of commercial trucks present no-zones that leave the driver vulnerable to unseen vehicles and pedestrians. When smaller vehicle drivers do not consider this, they can unknowingly enter these blind spots and become invisible to the truck driver. This can lead to dangerous situations, such as lane changes or merging without the truck driver realizing there is another vehicle in their path.
Another cause of truck blind spot accidents is a lack of awareness or education among truck drivers and motorists. Truck drivers may not always be fully aware of the extent of their blind spots or may not consistently check their mirrors or blind spot detection systems.
Additionally, other drivers may not be aware of the specific blind spots of trucks or may not know how to properly share the road with these larger vehicles. Lack of awareness or understanding of blind spots can lead to unsafe maneuvers or misjudgments by both truck drivers and other motorists, increasing the risk of accidents.
One common type of truck blind spot accident is known as a “squeeze play” accident. This occurs when a car traveling alongside a truck attempts to pass the truck but ends up getting wedged between the truck and a barrier, such as a guardrail or median. The driver of the car may not realize they are in the truck’s blind spot, and the truck driver may not be able to see the car due to the extensive blind spots.
This type of accident can cause serious injuries or fatalities. If you’ve been injured in an accident with a truck, call the blind spot truck accident lawyers at Torgenson Law. Our attorneys have represented Arizona drivers in all types of truck accidents, and we understand the law surrounding truck accidents and how to build a compelling case for compensation.
Some other collisions that may occur from a failure to check the blind spot include:
Another common type of truck blind spot accident is when a smaller vehicle, such as a motorcycle or bicycle, is traveling in the truck’s blind spot, and the truck driver merges or changes lanes without checking their blind spots. This can lead to the smaller vehicle being struck or forced off the road. These types of accidents can be especially dangerous for smaller vehicles because they have less protection in the event of a collision with a commercial vehicle.
Determining liability for truck blind spot accidents can be complex and depends on numerous factors. In Arizona, multiple parties may be liable for these types of accidents. The truck driver might be held responsible if they failed to check their blind spot properly or used their mirrors inadequately. Trucking companies can also be held liable if they neglect to properly train their drivers or do not maintain the equipment appropriately, such as broken mirrors or faulty sensors.
If a faulty part in the truck caused the accident, the manufacturer or supplier of that specific part could be held liable. Likewise, other motorists involved in the accident could be accountable if they were driving recklessly or negligently, contributing to the collision.
Liability in truck blind spot accidents is determined on a case-by-case basis, considering each the circumstances and proportional negligence of each party involved. It is essential to thoroughly investigate these accidents, gathering evidence such as eyewitness testimonies, video footage, and police reports, to establish liability properly. Consulting with Torgenson Law’s legal professionals experienced in blind spot truck accident cases can help victims understand their rights and pursue compensation from the liable parties.
Having the right law firm on your side is essential when going up against the trucking company’s insurance company. Many trucking companies retain large law firms to represent them and their drivers. Also, insurance companies are looking out for their best interest and will work on getting the lowest settlement possible. That’s why Arizona drivers need the absolute best legal representation available to obtain adequate compensation for their pain and suffering.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, call us for a free and confidential evaluation of your case. We’ve represented Arizona drivers in all types of accidents over the years, and our truck accident lawyers will work directly with you to build a persuasive claim for compensation. We don’t get paid unless we get you a monetary judgment for your injuries and damages. Contact us today for a case review at 602-726-0747, or reach out online so we can get you started on the road to recovery.