Determining fault in a crash between a large truck and a passenger vehicle is a more complex undertaking than if the accident simply involved two cars.
The truck driver may appear to be responsible for causing the crash. However, depending on the circumstances, other parties may also share liability.
Reasons for concern
You may feel uncomfortable driving next to a certain big rig on the freeway. The truck has worn tires, for one thing, and the driver apparently finds it difficult to stay within his lane. You are considering slowing and dropping back when the truck suddenly drifts out of its lane and sideswipes your car, forcing you off the road.
Overloading may cause a large truck to be off-balance. If the cargo is not distributed properly, the driver may find the vehicle difficult to control. It will take longer to stop and the driver, especially someone new to the profession, may not realize the amount of braking needed. Continual overloading may also result in wear and tear on various components and on tires, which could cause a blowout.
Along with overloading, issues such as driver distraction, fatigue and poor vehicle maintenance can contribute to a devastating truck-car crash. In determining who is at fault, a thorough investigation will take place. The evidence may show that multiple parties share liability; for example, the truck driver, the company that owns the truck, the company that loaded the cargo and the company responsible for maintaining the vehicle. If you are the victim, you have a right to expect maximum compensation to cover your current and future medical expenses, lost wages and more.