Auto accident lawyers in California will not be surprised to know that 50 percent of the list comprises of highways in California. The number one spot on the list is taken by I-15 in San Bernardino, California which recorded a total of 834 automobile accidents during the study period. These motor vehicle crashes accounted for 1,069 deaths. I-15 is the only highway on the list with more than 1,000 fatalities, and has a gap of more than 500 fatalities with the next highway on the list. At second place on the list is I-10 in Riverside County, with a total of 440 accidents leading to 515 fatalities. At number 3 is I-5 in Los Angeles County, accounting for 434 auto accidents during the study period, and contributing to 494 deaths. I-5 in San Diego County occupies 6th place on the list with 348 accidents contributing to 382 deaths.
There were a total of 218 accidents here, contributing to a total of 252 deaths. Poor driving, overworked drivers that are being paid by the mile, oversized truck loads and various other unsafe practices increase the dangers in operating these heavy trucks that weigh up to 80,000 pounds (the average passenger car weighs approximately 3,000 pounds). But a lot of truck accidents are also caused by simple driver error: there is much less of a margin for error when driving a big rig truck.
In addition to these legal considerations, when we investigate truck accident cases in California, we consider these factors and other details specific to truck accidents because there are always additional things lawyers must consider in truck accident cases. For example, most big rig trucks maintain "black boxes" that measure various parameters that can assist the truck accident lawyer and/or truck accident reconstruction expert in determining how the truck accident occurred. Also, because there is extensive federal regulation applicable to the trucking industry, there are also intricate regulations covering the use and maintenance of commercial trucks. This gives us a treasure trove of information about the truck driver and his vehicle that is typically not available in passenger car accident cases.
This is a real advantage in truck accident cases when representing injured victims. Another important consideration for semi-truck accident lawyers in California is the preservation of critical evidence, such as the black box information discussed above. Obviously, truck drivers and trucking companies have an incentive to destroy evidence that does not support their version of the facts of the accident. Parties in a truck accident case have a duty to retain evidence that could be relevant to the accident if they believe the accident could be subject of litigation. In order to ascertain that valuable evidence is not destroyed, the truck accident lawyer in California should send correspondence to the potential defendants as soon as possible to put the defendants on notice of a potential claim. In California, the destruction or alteration of evidence by a party gives rise to inferences or presumptions unfavorable to the spoliator. In other words, if a trucking company destroys evidence, the accident victim might seek and receive from the judge a spoliation instruction which essentially says assume that the destroyed evidence contained information most favorable to the Plaintiff.
In these truck accidents, 97% of fatal truck accidents are victims in passenger cars or trucks, not at-fault driver of the commercial truck. But trucking industry is a $600 billion dollar business and these companies have many qualified California truck accident lawyers at their disposal to vigorously fight personal injury claims from injured victims. Our truck accident lawyers have the experience and reputation to stand up to these companies to get fair compensation for our clients who have been injured in a truck accident. Our truck accident lawyers have learned what logbooks, receipts and other crucial evidence our lawyers must find to find the evidence to bring about a just result. If you have been injured or have lost a loved one in a truck accident in California or anywhere else in the United States, call Tryk Law at (559) 840-3240 or get a free online consultation with Benjamin P. Tryk, personally.
Causes of Truck Accidents in California
There are four main risks that cause truck accidents that are not typically present with passenger cars. The first is simply that big trucks have a difficult time stopping, which leads to a great number of rear-end accidents.
Invariably, the defendant's truck accident lawyers claim that the truck jackknifed because the road was slippery or the truck was required to make an emergency stop, often claiming a phantom vehicle caused the accident. Usually, after our California truck accident lawyers have made a full investigation (often with the help of an accident reconstructionist), we find that there is no evidence of slippery road conditions or a phantom vehicle that caused he truck accident.