Have you ever been on the highway and found yourself surrounded by trucks on all sides? It’s actually pretty rare not to see a lot of trucks on major roads these days – they’re an integral part of everyday life, providing crucial goods and services to people and businesses here in the Annapolis area and all over the country.
But if your blood pressure rises and your hands grip the wheel a little tighter when you’re driving near a truck, you’re not alone. Truck accidents have been on the rise over the last decade or so – and a collision with a truck can have life-altering consequences.
There are a few reasons why trucks can cause particularly serious accidents. First, consider how big and heavy they are; an 18-wheeler/tractor trailer can weigh 10 times as much as a regular car (or more), so getting hit by one is bound to result in some damage. In addition, large trucks can have blind spots where the driver can’t easily see what’s going on behind or beside them. And a truck’s size makes it harder to maneuver than cars, so it’s trickier for truck drivers to quickly avoid dangerous situations.
So what are the most common truck accident injuries? Let’s break them down below.
Head injuries. Truck accidents frequently result in head injuries, given how large trucks are and the force with which they hit other cars. Concussions (jolts or blows to the brain that cause it to move back and forth) are the most common of these types of injury, and can be debilitating if they’re serious. Other head injuries include contusions (bruises to the brain) and hemorrhages (bleeding in the brain due to ruptured blood vessels).
Neck, back and spinal injuries. If you’re hit from behind by a truck, your head and neck are likely to snap forward while your back, which is supported by your seat, stays in place – an injury commonly known as whiplash. Even with seat support, back and spinal injuries are common in truck accidents; a side-impact crash could twist your back, herniating the discs in your spinal cord. A serious impact could even fracture one or more of your vertebrae, causing chronic pain and potentially affecting your ability to walk.
Broken bones. Speaking of fractures, broken bones are a frequent outcome of truck accidents. While your bones are relatively strong, they’re not strong enough to withstand the force of being hit by a vehicle weighing over 50,000 pounds. Arms, legs and ribs tend to suffer the most damage after a collision with a truck.
Cuts and lacerations. Considering all of the debris that flies around as the result of an impact, it’s not surprising that cuts and lacerations are a common injury in trucking accidents. And while you’d probably consider yourself lucky to escape a crash with nothing more than cuts, you still have to make sure they’re properly treated. Left alone, serious lacerations can cause infections, skin damage or permanent disfigurement.
Burns. Burn injuries occur often in truck accidents because trucks can leak fuel after a collision. The leaking fuel is then ignited by other parts of the vehicle, like a hot engine, resulting in a fire and burn risks for vehicle occupants. Or a truck might be carrying flammable cargo like gasoline or explosives, which can be catastrophically dangerous if ignited.
If you’ve been in a truck accident in Annapolis and you believe the other driver is at fault, a lawyer can help you determine the best course of action. Contact the Law Offices of Nicholas Parr in Baltimore, MD today to schedule your free consultation. We don’t receive a fee unless we win.