Examples Of Truck Driver Negligence In Maryland Truck Accidents
With just a glance at the massive commercial vehicles speeding down I-95, I-70, and Maryland state highways, you know that truck accidents can lead to severe destruction and catastrophic injuries. Collisions involving semis, tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers, and other large trucks are a common occurrence according to statistics from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Every year, there are more than 3,750 truck crashes in Maryland, leading to 45 fatalities and injuries to almost 1,800 victims. The losses can be devastating, including physical, financial, and emotional consequences that are life-changing for entire families.
Truck accidents are preventable and typically only occur because truck operators do not exercise reasonable care behind the wheel. As such, these tragedies are covered by Maryland personal injury laws, so compensation is available for victims. However, knowing the specific types of carelessness is often helpful for avoiding crashes or reducing the impact. You should trust an Owings Mills truck driver negligence lawyer to assist with your legal remedies, but read on for some examples.
Two Forms of Negligence by Truck Drivers: In legal terms, negligence is the failure to use proper caution while driving and avoiding actions that could cause harm to others. When it comes to truck operators, there are two categories of negligence:
- Basic Motorist Negligence: No matter what kind of vehicle someone is driving, some acts put other road users at risk. You probably recognize them and may even be guilty yourself. Examples include speeding, drunk driving, running red lights, and texting while driving.
- Specific Acts by Truck Drivers: Commercial trucks are unique in many ways, giving rise to an entirely separate category of negligence that does not apply to motorists in traditional vehicles. Violations of trucking regulations are an example, such as failing to comply with load weight limits or Hours of Service (HOS). Truck driver negligence may also involve careless traffic maneuvers, which might be perfectly safe for drivers of other vehicles – but can be risky because of the size, length, and weight of the truck.
Maryland’s Harsh Contributory Negligence Rule: Careless, reckless acts by truck drivers are not the only focus in a truck accident claim because of a harsh law that Maryland follows. Under the rule of contributory negligence, the actions of the victim are also at issue. If you breached the duty of care by engaging in unreasonably safe driving, you could be barred from recovering compensation. Unlike other US states that merely reduce the amount of monetary damages, the victim of an accident cannot obtain any amount if he or she was negligent. The acts described in #1 above, and many others, could bar your claim.
Discuss Your Legal Remedies with an Owings Mills Truck Accident Attorney
As you can see, defending allegations that you were negligent is just as critical as proving that the truck driver was negligent in an accident. Our team at Furman | Honick Law is prepared for claims of contributory negligence, so we are dedicated to protecting your rights. To learn more, please call 410-844-6000 or go online to set up a free consultation.