Some of the most common causes of big rig crashes include vehicle malfunctions, environment factors and driver problems.

Truck drivers tend to spend a lot of time on Connecticut roads, so it is not surprising that they get into the occasional accident. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, there were 3,986 deaths due to accidents with semis over the course of a single year. Because a truck usually weighs 20 to 30 times more than a passenger car, the occupants in other vehicles are often at a greater risk in these types of accidents than the driver of the truck. Sixty-six percent of the reported deaths were commuters in cars or other passenger vehicles and 17 percent were truck drivers or occupants.

Vehicle malfunctions

Big rigs, like other vehicles on the road, can start to malfunction when in traffic or on the highway. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration states that 10 percent of truck crashes were linked to problems caused by the large vehicle. Common vehicle issues that lead to crashes include the following:

  • Tires go flat or blow out.
  • Brakes do not work properly.
  • Cargos shift significantly in the trailer.

These issues may be caused by irregular upkeep or poor manufacturing.

Environment factors

Outside factors can also affect a trucker's chances of getting in a crash. Three percent of all crashes said to be caused by trucks were impacted by the environment. Roadway problems, like obstructions or potholes, could be associated with the cause of the accident. Sometimes even the weather can play a role in a crash taking place.

In other cases, the outside causes of an accident are actually other drivers. For example, if a car cuts off a semi, the trucker may have to slam on his brakes. This could lead to the vehicle behind the big rig getting into an accident with the trucker. Only 44 percent of crashes between a truck and another vehicle were caused by the semi operator.

Driver issues

As professional drivers, truckers are often thought of as good vehicle operators. However, 87 percent of semi accidents were assigned a critical reason associated directly with the driver. Whether it was the operator's performance, recognition, decision or non-performance, he or she somehow caused the accident. The top driver related causes for a big rig accident usually include drowsiness, unfamiliarity with the road, overperforming for road conditions or distractions. If a trucker does not follow the rules of the road properly, he or she may be the cause of a traffic incident.

Unfortunately, many Connecticut residents may get in some type of car crash while out on the road. No matter the situation of the accident, it may be beneficial to work with an attorney who has experience with this type of personal injury case.