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How Can Negligent Behavior Lead to Colorado Truck Accidents?

Posted on in Personal Injury

Larimer County truck accident attorney

We have all seen images of catastrophic truck accidents. Stories of truck collisions often make it to local news, especially if their aftermath resulted in serious injuries or fatalities. Many motorists become anxious when driving near trucks, and with good reason. The maximum gross weight of a truck can be 80,000 pounds, which by itself can cause damage even without negligent driving behavior. All drivers can take safety precautions like staying out of a truck’s blind spot, but it can be impossible to control the actions of other motorists on the road, including truckers. 

Factors That Can Increase the Likelihood of a Truck Crash

Like any auto accident, there are common reasons why truck accidents occur. Anyone can make a mistake while driving, but crashes caused by the negligence of truck drivers are often preventable. When drivers or trucking companies act negligently, they should be held accountable for injuries or wrongful deaths that occur as a result. Negligent truck drivers can pose a significant danger because of the mass and power of their vehicles. Trucks can also carry hazardous materials, so drivers need to pay close attention and follow the rules of the road while operating these massive vehicles. 

Drinking while driving is negligent in any capacity. In Colorado, the legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08 percent for most drivers. However, this limit is half as high for truck drivers, and a BAC of 0.04 percent can result in a DUI. A truck driver with a commercial driver's license (CDL) has a higher expectation of responsibility than the operators of smaller vehicles on the road. For example, a commercial truck driver cannot consume alcohol within four hours of starting their shift, and he or she is not allowed to have alcohol in their vehicle. Private trucking companies may also have their own set of standards that drivers must follow. 

Speed limits are determined by the geography and population of an area. On hills or turns, trucks over a certain weight may have a different speed limit than lighter vehicles. Like an SUV versus a passenger car, trucks have a higher probability of rolling over when making a turn. A truck driver may speed to reach his or her destination more quickly, but these types of reckless actions may cause an accident instead. 

The United States Department of Transportation sets regulations for truck drivers, including strict limits on how long they can actively drive. Drivers need adequate rest and sleep before continuing or beginning a new driving shift. Being overly tired can have a worse effect on a person’s motor function and reaction time than alcohol. Drivers should follow the required standards, and companies should enforce proper rest for the safety of everyone on the road.

Contact a Larimer County Personal Injury Lawyer

Being involved in a truck accident can be devastating physically, emotionally, and financially. Victims of negligence from trucking companies need representation to receive compensation for injuries or the death of a loved one. Contact an experienced Fort Collins truck accident attorney today to protect your rights after a truck crash. Call our office at 970-225-2190 to schedule your free consultation. 

 

Sources:

https://www.iihs.org/topics/fatality-statistics/detail/large-trucks

https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/sw/overview/index.htm

https://www.cdljobs.com/news-notes/news/truck-drivers-and-alcohol

 

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

123 North College Avenue, Suite 160,
Fort Collins, CO 80524

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