Large trucks sit higher off the ground than other vehicles, which can create a problem since other cars on the road can easily get crushed underneath. This is called an underride truck accident. Underride truck accidents may not occur on a daily basis, but our Las Vegas truck accident lawyers know they are catastrophic enough to cause high fatality and injury rates when they do.
An underride accident is arguably one of the worst types of large truck accidents. There are two types:
When a vehicle slides under the side of a large truck. These incidents often happen at night or when there are low sun-angle conditions, when the driver is crossing or turning onto a street, making a U-turn, or is backing across traffic. In these situations, truck drivers assume they are seen by others on the road, but that is not always the case.
A vehicle slides under the rear end of a truck or trailer in an accident. These collisions often happen when a vehicle follows too closely or is tailgating, when a poorly marked truck is parked on the side of the road, or in low visibility conditions.
Underride accidents are very dangerous as the majority of vehicles that slide under a truck are severely crushed, making it difficult for the victims to escape or survive. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that in 2015, of the 1,542 passenger vehicle occupants killed in two-vehicle crashes with a tractor-trailer, 301 died when their vehicles struck the side of the truck. This compares with the 292 people who died when their vehicles struck the rear of a tractor-trailer.
IIHS researchers cannot determine precisely how many of these accidents involve underride because of gaps in crash data. Still, they estimate that underride occurs in approximately half of fatal crashes between passenger vehicles and large trucks.
There are various ways these collisions can happen, but some of the most common causes of underride truck accidents are:
If you or someone you love was injured in an underride truck accident, contact Harris & Harris Injury Lawyers. A Las Vegas personal injury attorney from our firm can perform a thorough investigation into your collision and help you hold the responsible parties accountable. Call (702) 384-1414 today for a free evaluation of your case.
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