Underride accidents are among the most deadly types of auto collisions on Arizona’s roads. If you suffered catastrophic injuries or lost a beloved family member in a truck underride crash in Arizona, you need an Phoenix truck accident lawyer. The truck driver and/or company may be liable for your damages if it could have reasonably prevented the accident. The Phoenix underride accident lawyers at Begam Marks & Traulsen, P.A. want to help you explore your rights and legal options in Phoenix. You may be eligible for significant compensation.
What Is an Underride Accident?
An underride accident occurs when a passenger vehicle collides with the underside of a commercial truck, either at the side or the back of the truck. The smaller vehicle may become lodged under the taller truck bed in underride accidents. The passenger compartments of smaller vehicles often collapse inward or get completely ripped away in underride accidents – often killing drivers and passengers.
Underride accidents are so deadly because the strong underside of the semi-truck or 18-wheeler is inflexible as it collides with the top half of a passenger vehicle. The smaller car absorbs all or most of the energy in the collision, resulting in severe damage to the car. If the car is short enough, it will slide completely underneath the taller commercial truck – lending a very high risk of fatal injuries such as decapitations. Underride accidents often do not have any survivors in the passenger vehicle.
How Do Underride Accidents Happen?
Underride accidents happen when smaller vehicles run into large trucks or when large trucks run over passenger vehicles. For example, a truck driver miscalculating stopping distance between the truck and the vehicle in front of the truck could result in the truck running over the smaller car. Bad brakes, poor stopping technique, distracted/drowsy driving, speeding, failure to yield, improper lane changes, or foggy weather can all contribute in these types of accidents. It is up to the truck driver to pay attention to the road at all times and to keep a proper following distance to prevent these accidents.
Who Might Be Liable for Underride Accidents?
Underride accidents that result from negligent or careless truck drivers can point to trucking company liability. Trucking companies will almost always be legally responsible for the actions of on-duty drivers, even if the driver is an independent contractor and not an employee. A trucking company might also be accountable for an underride crash if the employer was negligent. For example, if the company never trained a driver on how to apply the brakes on wet roads or failed to maintain its trucks’ brakes, the employer might be liable for a resultant underride wreck.
A product manufacturing company could be liable for an underride accident if a defective auto part contributed to the crash. Bad brakes from a flawed design or assembly error, for example, would come down to manufacturer liability. Another possible defendant is the city of Phoenix for unsafe or defective roadways. If a red light malfunctioned, for example, and a passenger car collided into the side of a commercial truck, the city could be liable for unsafe roadways.
Contact an Attorney for Your Underride Accident Claim
In the event that a loved one died in a Phoenix underride accident, you could have grounds to file a wrongful death claim against the trucking company and/or another party. Many different surviving family members have the right to seek damages for the wrongful death of a loved one, including surviving spouses, children, and parents. A wrongful death claim could result in retribution for funeral/burial expenses, medical bills until the time of death, lost wages and inheritance, and pain and suffering of both the decedent and the surviving family.
Talk to a personal injury lawyer in Phoenix about a personal injury or wrongful death underride claim in Phoenix. Call Begam Marks & Traulsen, P.A. at (602) 254-6071 or reach our lawyers online today.