| Added On February 8, 2010
If you have spent any time on the nation’s highways, you have certainly seen your share of double and even triple trailer trucks. Officially known as Longer Combination Vehicles (LCVs) they can be found in four basic forms. The first is known as a Rocky Mountain Double and consists of a tractor pulling a full-size semi-trailer (48 feet in length) plus a smaller trailer (28 feet in length). A Turnpike Double consists of a tractor pulling two 48 foot trailers. The B-Train Double consists of a tractor pulling two 48 foot trailers linked together by a fifth wheel. Lastly, a Triple Trailer combination consists of a tractor pulling three 28 foot trailers. Most states restrict the operation of these combination trailers due in large part to the safety concerns associated with them. If you have ever seen one of these, you can’t help but wonder whether they are safe.
Large trucks account for only about 3 % of all registered vehicles on the road, yet are responsible for 12% of all traffic fatalities. Not surprisingly, statistics show that of all the large trucks involved in fatal accidents, a staggering 76% were combination trucks. That means that a combination truck is three times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than a single unit truck. The reason that these type of tractor – trailers are so dangerous is that they can become difficult, if not impossible, to control very quickly. A relatively small tractor steering movement -for example a lane-change maneuver – can be magnified greatly by the time it reaches the second trailer. What began as a simple maneuver can cause the driver to loose control of the truck and trailers in just seconds. This loss of control can result in exaggerated sway and ultimately lead to a rollover before the driver can do anything to prevent it. While a regular tractor – trailer can carry a maximum weight of anywhere from 80,000 to 100,000 pounds, a combination trailer can be carrying up to 147,000 pounds. Given the fact that the average car weighs around 4,000 pounds, it is not difficult to understand why a collision with one of these behemoths is so likely to result in serious injury or death. The playing field is far from even.
Despite all of the safety concerns, it appears as though these road giants will be traveling the nation’s highways for the foreseeable future. If you encounter one while traveling, make sure you give it plenty of room to maneuver and make sure you are within his field of vision. If you have been involved in an accident with one of these combination trucks, you may be entitled to compensation for any injuries you have suffered as a result of the accident. Only an experienced California truck accident attorney can evaluate your particular case and answer all your questions.
If you would like to speak to an experienced California truck accident attorney about evaluating your case, contact the law offices of Ledger & Associates at 1-800-300-0001 or visit us at www.ledgerlaw.com