In the early morning of August 16, a multi-vehicle accident in Florida involving a tractor-trailer, a school bus and an SUV killed one person, hospitalized another and shut down a state highway for hours. The tractor-trailer was travelling northbound and somehow crossed into the southbound lane, slamming into an SUV head-on. The truck’s impact caused the SUV to careen into a school bus. The truck went off-road and crashed into a business, coming to a full stop inside a commercial building. The SUV driver was killed, and the truck driver was taken to the hospital. Thankfully, there were no students on the school bus, and neither the bus driver nor nearby pedestrians were seriously injured.
Causes of trucking accidents
Most trucking accidents are not like car accidents. As a result of massive truck sizes, accidents with these vehicles often cause catastrophic damages to other drivers, other vehicles on the road and nearby people and property.
Some causes of truck accidents include:
Poorly trained or poorly supervised drivers
Defective vehicles or parts
Inebriated or impaired drivers
In addition, drivers of smaller vehicles who underestimate trucks’ blind spots or their difficulties braking or maneuvering quickly can contribute to truck accidents.
Federal and state regulations: trucking accident liability
Stringent state and federal regulations and insurance requirements are designed to minimize accidents. The federal government and Florida scrutinize truck companies’ compliance with safety requirements and insurance protocols. Despite often being a vehicle’s registered owner, a trucker is considered a statutory employee of the trucking company, and the company is responsible for the driver’s on-the-job conduct. In addition, Florida law requires trucking companies carrying volatile or unsafe materials to carry sizeable liability insurance.