Big rigs are dangerous, even when parked. Their size and mass put every other car at a disadvantage when the two collide. If a tractor-trailer plows into your car, and it’s the driver’s fault, then the trucking company or the driver is going to pay for your damages. But what if you hit a tractor-trailer that was parked on the shoulder of the freeway?
Unfortunately, this happens fairly often. A truck driver pulls over on the shoulder of the freeway or highway, and someone hits them. In most cases, the occupants of the car are going to take the brunt of the punishment.
One Dead in Firery Tractor-Trailer Crash on NJ Turnpike
A tractor-trailer was rear-ended by a van on Monday, May 11, 2020, on the New Jersey Turnpike. Police say that the accident happened when a van hit a parked tractor-trailer and the crash caused the truck to catch fire.
The crash took place in the southbound lanes of the turnpike near Mount Laurel. The driver of the van died at the scene, and the driver of the tractor-trailer didn’t appear to be injured. Police say they don’t know why the van moved off the road and onto the shoulder, and that the accident is still under investigation.
The driver of a tractor-trailer has a heightened duty when operating his or her rig. It’s not just because the driver is a professional and they are trained and thus held to a higher standard, it’s that coupled with the danger a tractor-trailer can do to a passenger vehicle and its occupants.
A simple mistake can have grave consequences, and the law holds the truck driver to the same standard as every safe and prudent truck driver that operates tractor-trailers on the highways.
So this means that if the truck driver fails to do what is safe when the rig is parked on the shoulder of a freeway and someone is injured, the truck driver is likely liable.
If a prudent and safe driver would have put out flares or reflectors, then this driver should too. If a safe and experienced truck driver would have left their flashers on and got as far off the freeway lane as possible, then this truck driver should as well.
Parked tractor-trailer Injuries
The reason a big rig truck driver is held to a heightened standard is because of the damage a big truck can do. A fully loaded tractor-trailer can weigh as much as 80,000 libs, and a passenger car averages around 3,000 to 3,500. Most of the damage is going to impact the smaller, lighter vehicle and its occupants.
At the Pearce Law Firm, Personal Injury and Accident Lawyers, P.C., we represent clients in Philadelphia and South Jersey, and we’re no stranger to tractor-trailers and other large commercial trucks on our freeways. We’ve seen first-hand the carnage and devastation that a large commercial truck can do to a car or small truck. Some of the injuries that happen in a tractor-trailer accident are:
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Crush Injuries
- First to Third-Degree Burns
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Broken Ribs/Collarbones
- Compound Fractures
- Nerve Damage
- Deep Lacerations
- Airbag Injuries
If you’ve suffered any of these—or any—injuries, because of the negligence of a truck driver, please know that at the Pearce Law Firm, Personal Injury and Accident Lawyers, P.C. we know what to do to make sure you get treated fairly and according to the law. We know how the system works and that you are entitled to compensation if the other driver was at fault.
Contact a South Jersey Personal Injury Lawyer.
After an accident involving a serious injury, contact a South Jersey Personal Injury Lawyer such as Edith Pearce. Unlike the huge firms with dozens of attorneys and many different attorneys handling different aspects of your case, Edith Pearce is personally involved in every case that we handle. She genuinely cares about her clients and you will not be treated like just another case or file.