Information About Truck Accidents in Dallas
Dallas is, unfortunately, no stranger to trucking accidents. As a large city with an inland port that’s intersected by railroads and interstate highways, 18-wheelers are a common sight on Dallas roadways. According to an article in D Magazine, Dallas has the second-highest fatality rate from traffic accidents of the 15 most populated cities in the United States. There was an 80% increase in annual traffic fatalities in Dallas from 2010 to 2020.
With their immense size and weight, there’s no question that commercial trucks can cause the most damage when involved in an accident of any kind. According to 2020 statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), there were 3,735 collisions involving commercial vehicles in Dallas County.
These accidents claimed 31 lives and caused hundreds of injuries.
One article in The Dallas Morning News discussed the recent increase in Dallas truck accidents. The article considered a spike in fatal commercial trucking accidents in the 12 counties that comprise the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, specifically from 2019 to 2020 and again from 2020 to 2021. At least 92 fatal trucking accidents happened in these 12 counties in 2021, an increase of 14 from 2019, despite shelter-in-place orders and fewer vehicles on roads due to COVID-19. Potential causes highlighted in the article include aggressive driving, fatigued truck drivers, and companies that pressure truckers to underreport hours or cut corners to make tight deadlines.
Just in recent months, the Dallas area saw numerous truck accidents:
Click below for more information on Dallas truck accidents, traffic, and commercial vehicles:
Why 18-Wheeler Accidents Are Devastating
Per recent data, there were 4,119 fatalities caused by trucking accidents in the U.S. in 2019. Of those who were killed during these crashes, 16% were truck occupants while 82% were occupants of other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcycle riders. Additionally, 118,000 trucks were involved in traffic accidents that caused injuries.
Truck accident deaths are increasingly common. Since 2019, fatalities involving large trucks have increased 31%.
Truck crashes are so devastating because of their size and weight. A big rig is typically 20-30 times heavier than other vehicles on the road. This means that, when physics become involved in a truck accident, those in smaller vehicles are at a serious disadvantage. Large trucks are harder to operate, require 20-40 percent more distance to come to a safe stop, and require constant attention from their drivers to avoid disaster.
Causes of Dallas truck accidents often include:
- Driver fatigue
- Following other vehicles too closely
- Unsafe hiring practices
- Unsafe maneuvers
- A lack of training
- Rushed driving schedules
- Unsafe driving routes
- Improper cargo loading
- Inadequate maintenance
- Drug and alcohol use
- Operator negligence
Who Is at Fault for Trucking Accidents?
Truck accidents are devastating and have one other common characteristic: they can be complicated. At Arnold & Itkin, our 18-wheeler accident lawyers in Dallas are ready to put in the work required to determine what caused an accident. Sometimes, crashes are caused by the negligent operational practices of truck carriers. Often, they’re caused by negligence on the part of multiple parties. Our truck accident law firm is ready to investigate your situation, determine who is at fault, and fight for the compensation that you deserve and need to move forward.
There are three common at-fault parties after accidents:
- Truck Drivers: It only takes a moment of negligence for a truck driver to trigger a serious accident. Distracted driving, using alcohol or drugs, and defying hours of service regulations are common ways that truck drivers can cause a serious collision.
- Trucking Companies: Often, trucking companies place too much stress on their drivers. Rigid work schedules, difficult routes, and poor vehicle maintenance can cause big rig accidents that are not a driver's fault. Truck operators may be to blame for encouraging reckless behavior from their drivers.
- Truck Manufacturers: Faulty parts can cause unpredictable accidents that aren’t the fault of drivers or their companies. When truck manufacturers engineer unsafe products and parts, they should be held accountable. For example, manufacturers might fail to test the functionality of brakes.
While these are common contributors to truck accidents, there are other parties that might be at fault:
- Truck owners
- Companies involved with the freight being hauled
- Companies that loaded the freight being hauled
- Other drivers involved with an accident
Truck Accident Injuries
As mentioned above, trucks are larger and heavier than other vehicles. Because of this, they often cause significant injuries to occupants of smaller vehicles during a crash. Besides being painful, these preventable injuries can require extensive medical treatment and can change the rest of a person’s life. Often, truck accident injuries are catastrophic. In other words, they profoundly affect the quality of a person’s life.
Truck accident injuries often include:
Truck accident injuries, especially those listed above, can change the rest of a person’s life. After sustaining them, truck accident survivors often face extensive medical bills, a decreased or eliminated ability to work, and discomfort or pain that might last their entire life. Because of this, they deserve compensation from the parties that unfairly caused their hardships.
What Regulations Do Commercial Trucks Follow?
Commercial trucks are regulated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This agency designs the rules and requirements that every truck driver and operator must follow. Since the FMCSA has such thorough regulations, it’s likely that one or more of them were violated before an accident.
The FMCSA has rules that regulate things such as:
Trucks that operate within the borders of our state must follow the laws in the Texas Transportation Code. While slightly different, these laws resemble many of the requirements laid out by the FMCSA.
Dallas Oil Truck Accidents
Since it’s near oilfields, Dallas is surrounded by roads that are utilized by oil companies and their large oil trucks. Often, roads near oilfields aren’t designed to handle the traffic brought by the discovery oil reserves in a region. Because of this, they can be incredibly dangerous.
In fact, one report from the New York Times determined that nearly a third of oilfield worker deaths between 2003 and 2008 were caused by highway crashes.
Often, oilfield workers are rushed, exhausted, and place everyone else on the road at risk. When an oil truck is involved in an accident, the toxic and flammable materials that they carry can make a terrible situation even worse. Because of this, oil companies have an obligation—both legally and ethically—to make sure their drivers are trained, safe, and never worked to the point that they can’t drive safely.
Our Truck Accident Lawyers in Dallas Have a Reputation for Getting Results
Thousands of people are involved in truck accidents in Dallas County every year. Per TxDOT, Dallas County had the second-highest incident rate of commercial vehicle accidents in the state. There were 3,753 reported collisions in 2018 alone. Our truck accident lawyers in Dallas represent any survivor or families of victims of a commercial vehicle collision. This includes occupants of other vehicles, non-occupants like pedestrians or cyclists, and also truck drivers themselves. We’ve seen truckers wrongfully blamed for their injuries by their employers, loading companies, and other parties—and we’ve fought for results so they can get the care they need.
Some of our notable truck accident case results include:
- A record-setting $117 million verdict for a pregnant woman who was catastrophically injured when the ambulance she was riding in collided with the back of a sugar cane truck.
- A $12 million settlement for a truck driver who was crushed by his own cargo—and wrongfully blamed for the incident. We brought the truth to light.
- A $10 million settlement for the family of 2 people who were killed when the driver of an 18-wheeler ran a red light and struck their vehicle.
These results matter because they changed the lives of our clients. We’re dedicated to seeing the truth brought to light and justice served for the injured and wronged. No matter what.
For help from a personal injury law firm in Dallas with billions in recoveries, call (888) 493-1629. Your consultation is free, so there's no risk and no obligation.