According to the New Haven Register, a Connecticut truck driver was killed recently when he lost control of his vehicle in the thruway and the truck rolled over. Tragically, rollover accidents like this one are disproportionately likely to be deadly. A paper published by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicated approximately 18 percent of collisions with large trucks are rollover accidents. A much higher percentage of deadly truck crashes — 35 percent — are classified as rollover collisions. Both truckers and those in passenger vehicles surrounding a rolled over truck are in grave danger of serious injuries or death when a truck rolls over.
Rollover truck accidents in Connecticut often happen when truckers go too quickly, especially when navigating their vehicle around a curve. Rollover risks can also be exacerbated if a trucker has not loaded his vehicle carefully and balanced the load correctly. The higher center of gravity and top-heavy nature of commercial trucks makes these vehicles more likely to rollover, and going too fast or having an unbalanced load makes the risk even worse. Truck drivers need to be aware that rollover accidents are such a common cause of deadly crashes and need to take steps to try to prevent collisions from occurring.
Focus on Preventing Common Types of Truck Crashes
Rollover collisions are one of three common types of accidents that disproportionately occur when trucks are involved in car accidents. Two other types of accidents-- underride accidents and jackknife accidents- generally only occur when a truck is involved.
Underride accidents are very dangerous, causing 432 deaths each year and more than 5,000 injuries according to Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. An underride accident happens if a car goes under the carriage of a truck. Both side and rear underride guards are supposed to make this impossible, but underride accidents still happen even when these safety features. In fact, of a study of 1,000 truck crashes, only 22 percent didn't have at least some level of underride. The study had 28 fatal crashes, and 23 out of the 28 fatal accidents involved significantly underride.
Jackknife accidents are also very dangerous, and Wikihow indicates they can occur when the tractor of a tractor trailer swings out from where it is supposed to be and causes the trailer to spin and the driver to become unable to control the vehicle. Jackknife accidents happen when trailers start to skid, so avoiding a skid at all costs is key to preventing this common type of serious truck crash. Drivers should be cautious when braking, especially when going around a curve, going down hill, or on a slippery surface. Drivers also need to make sure that their trucks are well-maintained, as faulty supervision components and worn brakes are major contributing causes of jackknife truck accidents. When drivers fail to operate their vehicles safely or to maintain them properly and jackknife accidents occur, victims or their families can pursue damage claims.