Category: Truck Accidents

How Much Does A Semi Weigh?
August 31, 2020 / Truck Accidents

How Much Does A Semi Weigh?

If you’re wondering how much does a semi weigh, then the answer depends on whether or not the truck is pulling a trailer and how much cargo is in it. A fully loaded tractor trailer typically weighs about 80,000 pounds. A semi pulling an empty trailer weighs roughly 35,000 pounds. Loaded tractor trailers can take 20% - 40% more distance to stop than cars do – about the length of two football fields. 4,136 people died in U.S. large truck accidents in 2018, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI). When a car or motorcycle collides with a semi-truck, passengers in the smaller vehicle typically sustain the most catastrophic injuries. In fact, big truck accidents [...]


How Many Truck Accidents Happen Annually?
July 12, 2019 / Truck Accidents

How Many Truck Accidents Happen Annually?

Big rigs are an essential component of the U.S. economy, transporting goods and parts that consumers need. The trucking industry is regulated by a government agency called the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA), whose job it is to prevent injuries and accidents through safety regulations, technological advancements, and other measures. Carriers and individual drivers are required by law to adhere to FMSCA regulations. When they fail to do so, they put everyone on the road in danger and may be held legally responsible. How many truck accidents happen annually — including non-fatal crashes? About 500,000. If you or a family member has been hurt in a collision involving a commercial truck, call the Indianapolis truck a[...]


How to File a Truck Accident Claim in Indiana
June 17, 2019 / Truck Accidents

How to File a Truck Accident Claim in Indiana

As the driver of a personal vehicle, you have little chance of escaping unscathed if you are involved in an accident with a commercial truck. These behemoths of the road, ubiquitous on the highways of Indiana and the nation, are tightly regulated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), but transgressions in the industry are rampant. If you or a loved one has been injured in a collision with a tractor trailer, call the attorneys at Stephenson Rife to learn how to file a truck accident claim in Indiana. We have the experience, manpower, and tenacity to uncover violations, build your case, and win the damages you need to rebuild your life. Common Trucking Violations Trucking companies and drivers are required by law to[...]


Can Driving Simulators Make Trucks Safer?
June 10, 2019 / Truck Accidents

Can Driving Simulators Make Trucks Safer?

When a 5,000-pound car collides with an 80,000-pound eighteen-wheeler, the outcome is catastrophic for the passenger vehicle and its occupants. In 2017, according to data compiled by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, a total of 4,102 people in the United States died in accidents involving big rigs. That’s 30% higher than in 2009. Of the fatalities, just 17% were truckers, while 82% were occupants of another vehicle, pedestrians, cyclists, or motorcyclists. As the industry faces a staffing crisis with an estimated shortage of over 50,000 drivers, the government is rolling out a plan to lower the age requirement for driving a commercial truck across state lines. Carriers are offering incentives like signing bonuses and higher s[...]


Frequent Truck Safety Violations and Where to Report Them
April 15, 2019 / Truck Accidents

Frequent Truck Safety Violations and Where to Report Them

Any time you drive down a highway, you get a snapshot of the legions of commercial trucks that rumble across the nation, day and night. These behemoths dominate the other vehicles on the road, and it goes without saying that any accident involving one is bad news. There is a government agency — The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA — whose mission it is to regulate the trucking industry and prevent injuries and accidents through enforcing safety rules, improving technology, increasing awareness, and other measures. Trucking companies and drivers are required to follow FMSCA’s regulations. If they don’t, endangering everyone on the road, they can be held legally responsible. Here are a few of the most common[...]


Technology May Reduce The Damage Done by Fatigued Truck Drivers
March 7, 2019 / Truck Accidents

Technology May Reduce The Damage Done by Fatigued Truck Drivers

We may be in a period of time when technology’s ability to change our transportation system has never been greater. Though developments in the past impacted how vehicles are powered and their safety, today’s technology is shaping the future of the relationship between drivers, including those in commercial vehicles, and their vehicles. This technology has the potential to do many things, including reduce the threat fatigued drivers pose to themselves and others on Indiana’s roads. Technology may greatly reduce the number of drivers of commercial trucks, whether they’re fatigued or not. Though it’s not ready to be put safely on the road yet, given enough time, improved software and greater computing capacity, the replacement of [...]


November 26, 2018 / Truck Accidents

DRIVE-Safe Act: A Look Under the Hood

Three senators introduced the DRIVE-Safe Act to Congress in August. The controversial bill, which would lower the age requirement for driving a big-rig across state lines to 18, is meant to combat a growing shortage of truckers in the American economy. Currently, 18-year-olds are allowed to drive big-rigs, but they may not cross state lines until the age of 21. The Trucker Shortage America has a major truck driver shortage. American shippers need another 51,000 drivers to meet the freight demands generated through major corporations like Amazon and Walmart. Many companies offer major signing bonuses for drivers. Supporters of the DRIVE-Safe Act say that the bill will bring in new drivers to meet the demand. They say many people who might w[...]


August 20, 2018 / Truck Accidents

Tailgating Trucks? They Might Be Platooning

The next time you see one tractor-trailer closely tailgating another, the situation could be normal—the new normal, that is. Something called “platooning” is becoming legal in a number of states as technology advances, making this sort of behavior not only legally acceptable, but also safe. What is Platooning? Wireless electronic communications combined with other technology allow two semis to follow each other at close distances—as close as 30 feet in some cases. The most critical piece of the system is the communication portion that tells the second truck to brake as soon as the first truck does, often within ten milliseconds, and with no driver intervention. In other words, the two trucks brake more or less simultaneously. But p[...]


June 25, 2018 / Truck Accidents

Strengthening Drug Tests for Truck Drivers

In May, 2018, the Trucking Alliance (also known as the Alliance for Driver Safety & Security) publicly stated that they intend to advocate for a drug testing law that would apply to anyone seeking a “safety-sensitive” position in the trucking industry. One of the main purposes of the law is to address the increasing number of opioid addicts, keeping them out of a tractor-trailer driver’s seat. The proposed law would confirm that a potential employee had not used illegal drugs for a minimum of 30 days. Don’t We Already Test Drivers for Drug Use? You might think that the professionals who drive the big rigs would undergo the most comprehensive drug screening possible as part of the employment process. But the managing director for[...]


April 20, 2018 / Truck Accidents

Truckers Driving Dangerously: Unsafe Lane Changes

While the vast majority of large truck drivers exercise proper attention when it’s time to move into another lane, a few bad apples drive more dangerously, resulting in injuries and deaths for innocent victims. Abrupt lane changes by large commercial vehicles create havoc. The trailer that’s part of a semi often extends to 53 feet, and, in some cases, even longer. Such a vehicle takes up a lot of space on the road, making lane changes a matter requiring much care and attention to blind spots. Stephenson Rife handled a case that occurred on US 150 in Southern Indiana, a semi turned sharply left, in the left turn lane, causing its load of steel I-beams to move into the adjoining lane of traffic.  The vehicle passing in the right had no [...]


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