Semitrucks only make up a small percentage of the total number of vehicles on the road, but they have a disproportionately large presence. Every driver is usually very aware of an 18-wheeler in their general vicinity, and reports about crashes between passenger vehicles and commercial trucks often make the evening news.
There are a lot of differences between commercial trucks and passenger vehicles, from how much the vehicles cost to how far it takes them to stop in an emergency. The crashes they cause are also different than collisions involving two passenger vehicles.
What makes semitruck collisions so different than other traffic wrecks?
The damage to the smaller vehicle is often far worse
The significant difference in size between the vehicles involved in a crash sometimes means that a commercial truck ends up going over a passenger vehicle or that a passenger vehicle goes under the commercial truck. In either case, the damage to the smaller vehicle is often catastrophic.
A crash doesn’t need to be an underride or override wreck to cause massive damage and life-altering injuries. When a commercial truck hits the side of a passenger vehicle, the smaller vehicle will crumple, likely leaving it unsafe to drive.
There is more insurance coverage available
If there’s any bright side to a crash caused by a large commercial truck, it is it will likely have a much larger liability insurance policy than another passenger vehicle would. Federal regulations require a minimum of $750,000 in coverage in many cases, sometimes as much as $5 million.
For those trying to recover after a crash claims the life of someone they love, a bigger insurance policy may need a more appropriate amount of compensation. The same is true for someone dealing with a catastrophic injury, such as an injury that affects their brain or spinal cord. The extra insurance exists in no small part because of how much more damage commercial vehicles can cause.
Those hoping to bring an insurance claim against a commercial policy or look into a civil lawsuit against the transportation company or commercial driver will likely need support during that process. Educating yourself more about commercial wrecks and your rights after one will help you better handle the aftermath of a life-altering collision.