Dump trucks, with cargo that can weigh over 50 tons, are incredibly dangerous to operate. Dump truck collisions and injuries require an experienced truck accident lawyer who knows trucking law.
Usually in a dump truck accident with a smaller vehicle, the other vehicle will break up or be crushed. Depending on the speed of one or both vehicles when the crash occurs along with other factors, the other car’s driver and passengers have a greater probability of sustaining serious, disabling injuries or being killed than of escaping uninjured or with minor injuries.
Causes of Dump Truck Accidents
Dump trucks often haul loose material like concrete, gravel, and sand. There are many kinds of dump trucks, and the weight they’re able to haul varies. A standard dump truck uses a hydraulic lift to tilt the cargo carrier and dump the load. Some trucks, like a super standard hydraulic cylinder can haul 26 tons or more.
Dump trucks are taller than most other vehicles, and in a collision the other vehicle frequently goes under the dump truck, causing serious injury or death to those in the car. Dump truck drivers do not usually sustain injuries unless the truck flips on its side, goes down an embankment or the driver fails to utilize safety features.
These huge trucks have much bigger blind spots and some, like the semi-trailer dumper, are considered more dangerous. Because of a high gravity center on the dumper vs low weight of the truck’s trailer, there’s danger of imbalance causing the truck to move or even tip over.
Because dump truck loads weigh tons, if it tips onto another vehicle, or a mechanical failure or an accident cause the truck to dump its load prematurely and the load lands on another vehicle the weight of several tons of material like gravel or concrete will almost surely cause disabling injury to occupants of the other vehicle(s), should they survive.
Also, dump trucks sometimes hit pedestrians, bicyclists, or back over other workers at construction sites.
What to Do After a Crash
The most important thing to do after any North Carolina automobile collision is to seek medical attention. Even if you cannot identify external injuries, call 911 anyway. You may be in shock and it’s a very good idea to go to the hospital and be checked thoroughly. If your injuries are worse than you initially though, this could mean ongoing and devastating financial loss. Some injuries, such as traumatic brain injury, may not be apparent for weeks or months.
Because dump truck crashes have extreme consequences, one crash could mean paying millions to settle a claim or claims. Insurance companies don’t want to do this; they are in business to make a profit. The owner of the vehicle will immediately contact their insurer so they can send a team of investigators out to the accident site.
The insurance investigation team will arrive and begin doing what they can to avoid responsibility for paying a claim. They may discuss the collision with the police and even offer some “helpful and neighborly advice” to the police and point the police in your direction as the cause of the collision. For that reason, you need an experienced attorney in your corner at a critical time of any investigation – the beginning.
Representation for Dump Truck Collisions
If you’ve suffered injuries from a dump truck collision, you are entitled to compensation for the damages you’ve incurred. Maginnis Law’s lead personal injury attorney, T. Shawn Howard has experience handling complex cases including those involving victims of dump truck collisions.
We handle personal injury matters on a contingency basis – meaning that you do not pay any attorneys’ fee unless and until we make a recovery on your behalf. You can contact us at 919.526.0450 or through our contact page.