Evaluating the Hazards: Concrete Trucks and Road Safety Concerns

by | Feb 1, 2024 | Auto Accident, Firm News

Concrete trucks are ubiquitous on roads around construction sites but present unique challenges and dangers to public road safety due to their design and operational necessities. This detailed article discusses the specific risks associated with concrete trucks, typical accident scenarios involving these vehicles, the injuries that can result from such accidents, and the legal avenues available for victims seeking compensation.

Operational Risks Associated with Concrete Trucks

Concrete trucks, or cement mixers, carry mixed concrete that must remain in constant motion to prevent setting. This requirement introduces significant risk factors:

  • Weight and Balance: The weight of a fully loaded concrete truck can be enormous, significantly impacting its braking distance and maneuverability. Additionally, the rotating drum can shift the vehicle’s center of gravity, making it prone to tipping, especially on curves or during abrupt maneuvers.
  • Maintenance Requirements: The mechanical complexity of maintaining a rotating drum in motion adds an extra layer of operational risk. Failure to maintain these components properly can lead to mechanical failures that might compromise the safety of the truck.
  • Visibility Issues: Concrete trucks are equipped with large blind spots, much more so than standard passenger vehicles. These blind spots can obscure pedestrians, cyclists, and smaller vehicles, especially at intersections or while making turns.

Common Types of Concrete Truck Accidents

Concrete trucks are involved in a variety of accident types, each with potentially severe consequences:

  • Tip-over Accidents: Due to their high center of gravity when loaded, concrete trucks are particularly susceptible to tipping over while navigating turns or evasive maneuvers.
  • Rear-end Collisions: The heavy loads carried by concrete trucks increase their stopping distance. If a driver misjudges this distance, it can lead to serious rear-end collisions, especially in congested traffic or sudden stops.
  • Undercarriage Accidents: Smaller vehicles can become trapped under the truck in accidents due to the high clearance of concrete trucks.
  • Loading and Unloading Accidents: The process of loading and unloading concrete can also be hazardous, particularly if the truck becomes unstable or if the concrete is accidentally released prematurely.

Injuries and Their Impact on Victims

Accidents involving concrete trucks often result in severe injuries, given the size and weight of these vehicles:

  • Severe Physical Trauma: This includes multiple fractures, head injuries, and internal damage, which may require long-term medical treatment and can lead to permanent disability.
  • Fatalities: In severe cases, the force of an accident involving a concrete truck can be fatal due to the intense impact.
  • Psychological Effects: Survivors of serious road accidents involving heavy vehicles like concrete trucks can suffer from long-term psychological effects, including PTSD, anxiety, and depression.

Legal Implications and Pursuing Claims

For those involved in accidents with concrete trucks, the path to legal recourse involves several steps:

  • Determining Liability: This can be complex, as liability may involve the truck driver, the company owning the truck, or even third-party maintenance providers.
  • Documenting Evidence: Collecting detailed evidence is crucial. This includes accident scene photos, driver logs, vehicle maintenance records, and eyewitness accounts.
  • Navigating Regulations: Understanding and navigating the regulations governing commercial vehicles and construction equipment is essential for formulating a legal strategy.
  • Professional Legal Help: Engaging a personal injury attorney experienced in dealing with commercial vehicle accidents is critical. They can help manage the often complicated negotiations with multiple insurance companies and stakeholders to ensure that victims receive appropriate compensation for their injuries and losses.

In conclusion, while concrete trucks are vital for construction, they carry inherent risks that require awareness and precaution from all road users. Victims of accidents involving these vehicles should seek expert legal advice to navigate the complex aftermath and ensure their rights and well-being are adequately protected.

Spagnoletti Law Firm has attorneys licensed in Texas, Florida, New Mexico and New York.  We have handled numerous cases involving catastrophic auto and bus accidents in both federal and state court across the country.  Our attorneys have extensive experience and the skills needed to aggressively represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives or been seriously injured in a trucking or commercial vehicle accident.

The experienced accident attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm have previously been involved in similar cases and can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was involved in an accident. Please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or to learn more about your legal rights.