A rear-end collision between two cars is often referred to as a “fender bender” because this type of accident tends to cause relatively minor damage and injuries. However, when a rear-end collision occurs and one of the vehicles is a large commercial truck, the term “fender bender” generally will not apply. Due to the disparity in size between 18-wheelers and passenger cars, this type of collision can be extremely dangerous. With an 80,000-pound big rig crashing into the back of a 3,000-pound car, it should not be surprising that motorists can sustain devastating injuries.
Override and Underride Risks
While the sheer impact of a rear-end collision with a truck can be serious enough, there is also the additional risk of an override or underride event. These risks exist because the clearance under a truck is high enough for certain cars to fit underneath the truck.
Override – If a truck is the rear vehicle and hits a small car, the front bumper of the truck may actually drive on top of the back of the car. If this happens, anyone in the backseat of the car – especially children – can be crushed.
Underride – If a car is the rear vehicle and hits the back of a truck, the car can possibly drive underneath the back of the trailer. This can result in the car being trapped and dragged by the truck. If the back of the trailer goes through the windshield, the injuries to motorists are often fatal.
Even though most trucks have underride guards, these are not always effective1 in preventing this type of crash.
Causes of Rear-end Big Rig Collisions
Many rear-end truck accident are caused by acts of negligence,2 including the following:
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Driving too fast for weather or road conditions
- Aggressive driving
- Cutting off cars when changing lanes
- Overloading of cargo
- Exceeding weight limits
- Defective or poorly maintained brakes
Consult with a Texas Semi Crash Attorney for Assistance Today
If you have been in any type of truck accident, please call to discuss your case with a Houston tractor trailer collision attorney today. Call Stewart J. Guss, Attorney At Law at 800-898-4877.