Commercial trucks are the largest vehicles on the road, and all operators are required to have commercial driver’s licenses and special training. Part of that training includes being cognizant of truck blind spots that are more commonly referred to as “no-zones.” The sheer size of most commercial vehicles means that these blind spots are very large, covering the rear of the vehicle and a significant portion of each side. Not only is it important for truck drivers to be aware of these no-zones, but it’s also critical for other motorists to be aware when they may be traveling in these blind spots.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration states that one-third of all crashes between large trucks and cars take place in no-zones. The legal weight limit for most tractor-trailers is 40 tons, which is several times the roughly 5,000 pounds the average passenger vehicle weighs. No-zone collisions often have the potential to result in severe or even fatal injuries for motor vehicle occupants.
Did you suffer serious injuries or was your loved one killed in an accident in Roseville that was a result of being in a commercial truck’s blind spot? Truck accidents are incredibly complex, and retaining legal counsel with the experience and resources to take on all liable parties is the best way to handle these often complicated cases.
The Sevey Law Firm handles all truck accident cases on a contingency fee basis, so you do not pay us anything until you receive a monetary award. You can have our lawyers provide a complete evaluation of your case as soon as you call (916) 788-7100 or fill out an online contact form to schedule a free consultation.
Types of No-Zones
The no-zones on a commercial truck basically apply to all four sides of the vehicle. The specific dangers associated with each side are as follows:
- Front No-Zone — The cabs of most trucks are elevated several feet, so the driver cannot see the area directly in front of their vehicle. A car that cuts in front of a truck will be difficult for a driver to see, and it may make it impossible for the driver to stop in time to avoid a collision when the car stops suddenly. Motorists should try to provide one to two car lengths between their vehicles and the front of commercial trucks.
- Driver’s Side No-Zone — The area on the left side of a commercial truck between the driver’s side mirror and the front of their trailer is usually a no-zone. This is roughly one to two car lengths along the left side of the truck. Drivers traveling in this area risk injury when a truck driver makes a lane changes and doesn’t see them.
- Passenger Side No-Zone — The no-zone along the right side of a truck is much larger than the blind spot along the left side. A passenger side no-zone is about four to five lengths along the right side of a commercial truck, typically extending from passenger side mirror all the way along the right side of the trailer. When a driver attempts a lane change, they may not be able to see another vehicle traveling in this area.
- Rear No-Zone — All drivers should attempt to obey the “two-second rule” as it relates to following other motor vehicles, but especially commercial trucks. In other words, two seconds should pass between the moment the vehicle in front of you passes a roadside object and the moment your own vehicle reaches that object. Avoid tailgating commercial vehicles, as there are considerable blind spots on the rear ends of these vehicles. Failure to provide at least a car length can lead to possible override crashes.
All of the no-zones listed above generally apply when most commercial trucks are in motion, but another kind of blind spot that can exist for truck drivers concerns a diminished turning radius. When commercial trucks make certain 90-degree right turns, truck drivers have to first move to the left to conduct the turn.
All four of the listed blind spots can come into effect when a truck is attempting to perform a right turn. Other drivers need to be aware of a driver’s limitations in these circumstances.
No-Zone Accident Injuries
Crashes that occur in the blind spots of commercial trucks often result in people being seriously injured. Passenger vehicles are commonly totaled, and victims face several weeks, months, or even years of recovery.
The nature of the injuries a person might sustain in a no-zone crash can vary depending on numerous factors. In general, some of the most common kinds of injuries victims suffer in blind spot accidents include but are not limited to:
- Internal organ damage
- Nerve damage
- Burn injuries
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Head injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Muscle strains
- Soft tissue injuries
Some truck accident injuries result in fatalities. Victims’ family members can be entitled to file wrongful death claims against negligent parties in such cases.
While many people initially assume that truck drivers are to blame for these accidents (and that often proves to be the case), it is still important to have a lawyer determine whether other parties could also be liable for your injuries. One of the reasons that truck accidents are more complicated than traditional passenger vehicle crashes is that multiple parties, including a truck owner, a trucking company, or another party could also be held responsible.
You will want to have legal representation to ensure that an independent investigation is performed into the cause of your crash. When possible, try to take pictures of the scene of your accident or have somebody you know do this for you.
Contact a No-Zone Truck Accident Attorney Today
If you sustained serious injuries or your loved one was killed in a no-zone truck accident in the Roseville area of California, you will want to seek legal representation immediately. An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to fight to help you recover every dollar of compensation you are entitled to.
The record of success for The Sevey Law Firm includes a $2.5 million settlement on the first day of trial in a case in which the defendant originally only offered $900,000. Call (916) 788-7100 or contact us online to have our attorneys review your case and discuss all of your legal options during a free consultation.