How are semi-truck accident cases different from car accident cases?
Minneapolis personal injury lawyer Bill Sieben talks about the difference between semi-truck accident cases and car accident cases.
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Well, semi-tractor trailers are so dangerous. They’re many thousands of pounds traveling down freeways and roadways at 60, 70, 75 miles an hour. And so you’ve got the semi tractor and you’ve got a huge load behind it and it’s really dangerous. They can’t stop on a dime like many cars can. They jackknife easily. The drivers have many things going on in their cab that they’re paying attention to, not just cellphones but they’re paying attention to computers about when they have to be at certain terminals and what time and how to get there and watching their route and talking back and forth with their dispatcher’s office.
So a cab of a semi-tractor trailer is very busy and that means it’s much more dangerous because there are distractions in the cab. So you’ve got the combination of more distractions and a much more dangerous vehicle and speed and weather issues so our federal government has a code of federal regulations that puts a higher duty on the drivers of semi-tractor trailers than it does on cars, for instance.
And so if there’s a risk of an injury the code of federal regulations says stop diving. Not just a slight risk but if there’s a serious risk that a driver cannot control the vehicle, the federal code of regulation says that driver should stop until the condition clears up such as rain, snow, sleet, any other weather condition, fog, mist that impairs a derivers ability to react to hazards on the roadway.