Virginia Truck Accident News

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Virginia Truck Accident Attorney | Richard J. SerpeAvoiding Tractor Trailer Accidents

We’ve all been there: driving along the highway when a gigantic tractor trailer pulls up alongside. It’s a scary moment, and one when you’re hyper aware of the size difference between your car and the truck. One wrong move could spell disaster – and often does. Tractor trailer crashes are incredibly deadly because of that size difference. But there’s no need to be frightened of our truck driving fellow motorists. Indeed, there are several tips we can all remind ourselves of the next time we’re sharing the road with a tractor trailer.

  • Blind Spots, No Zones – You’ve probably noticed the signs on the backs of trucks warning drivers not to pass unless you see their mirrors. It’s not likely something you’ve spent much time considering, but it is actually incredibly important. Large truck blind spots are called “no zones” and are located on the front, sides and back of the tractor trailer. Avoid staying in these zones – either let the truck pass by or give it plenty of room on the road.
  • Slam on the brakes or collide? – Another important tip is to remember the challenges heavy trucks and buses can have when braking. Many times, tractor trailer and bus drivers must make the difficult decision to either slam on their brakes and potentially injure or kill their passengers, or collide with another car. Most often, they’ll choose to collide with the other car.
  • Passing – If you’re attempting to pass a tractor trailer, make sure you can spot the truck’s headlights in your rear view mirror before making your move. Use you signal as you normally would – don’t flash your lights at a trucker, as it could confuse them.
  • Don’t Cutoff a Large Truck – Never ever swerve in front of a truck. Their brakes sometimes take the length of an entire football field for the tractor trailer to come to a complete stop. That distance could mean serious injury or death for you and your passengers.
  • Avoid “Squeeze Play” – And finally, avoid what’s known as “squeeze play.” It’s the maneuver some drivers pull when a truck swings wide to make a left turn. Common in urban areas, this is a recipe for disaster. Even if you’re forced to miss your green light, avoiding a collision is much more important than saving a minute or two of time.

For more tips on avoiding tractor trailer wrecks, check out this list compiled by the American Moving and Storage Association.

Virginia Truck Accident Lawyers

The Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC has seen just how devastating truck accidents can be. We have been helping victims and their families injured by someone else’s negligence for over 29 years. If you’d like to setup a time to discuss your situation, contact us to setup a free consultation 877-544-5323.

interstate 81Thousands of commuters use I-81 every day, passing through Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Maryland and Virginia. The longest stretch of I-81 is through Virginia. Indeed, the road is a main thoroughfare, with many tractor trailer drivers using the highway to cut around the DC and New York traffic of I-95. Tragically, it is also one of the deadliest interstates. A recent news story reported it had been the site of more than 100 traffic accident deaths in just a decade.

Why is I-81 so deadly?

The presence of tractor trailers certainly doesn’t help things. The trucks are incredibly dangerous when they wreck, easily overpowering smaller cars and SUVs in their paths. When such vehicles collide, the accident is made much more serious given the size difference between the vehicles. Chain reaction crashes are also quite common when tractor trailers are present. With slower brakes, trucks cannot come to a stop as quickly as other types of vehicles, leading to collisions.

6,000 Crashes on I-81 in the last decade.

There have been more than 6,000 crashes on I-81 in the last decade, with 98 percent of the collisions resulting in deaths. A majority of these accidents occurred in the West Virginia corridor of I-81. Speed, recklessness, road conditions and weather are all major factors, but authorities say that the perpetual presence of tractor trailers is a big reason why so many crashes occur in that area.

What can you do prevent such an accident from occurring when you’re on the highway? First thing’s first: slow down. Increase your following distance to allow for changes in speed. Never, ever use your cell phone while operating your car, even if just for a second. Distractions are one of the most common causes of accidents on the highway.

Injured in a Virginia Truck Accident?

The Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC has seen just how devastating truck accidents can be. We have been helping victims and their families injured by someone else’s negligence for over 29 years. If you’d like to setup a time to discuss your situation, contact us to setup a free consultation 877-544-5323.

Fatal truck crashes are on the rise.

Comedian Tracy Morgan made headlines last year when a Walmart truck crashed into his vehicle, injuring Morgan and killing another passenger. He sustained traumatic brain injuries that prevented him from working. Sadly, his story is all too common. Indeed, fatal truck crashes are on the rise across the country. Their numbers have climbed steadily through the last four years, with regulations becoming more and more lax in spite of the scary statistics.

Regulations are becoming more lax in spite of the scary statistics.

Congress has recently allowed truck drivers to work up to 82 hours a week, an increase from the 70 hours over eight days policy previously in place. This means drivers no longer need to take 34-hour breaks over two nights to rest. Congress also hopes to lower the age of truck drivers from 21 to 18. Young adults with barely two years of driving experience would suddenly be behind the wheel of these behemoth vehicles.

Trucks are only responsible for 10 percent of the traffic in the United States, reports the New York Times, but they play a role in one out of every eight fatal collisions.  Cars and SUVs are safer than ever, with a three percent drop in fatal accidents from 2009 to 2013. Compare that with the 17 percent hike in fatal trucking accidents in those same four years.

Sacrificing Safety

The trucking industry is out to make a profit, and too often, that means sacrificing the safety of both their drivers and the general public. The reality is, though, that safer driving would likely save the industry money in insurance and in damage claims. Congress should put public safety above industry and require more accountability from trucking companies. It’s the only way to prevent the truck crash fatality rate from rising even further.

Injured in a Virginia Truck Accident?

The Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC has seen just how devastating truck accidents can be. We have been helping victims and their families injured by someone else’s negligence for over 29 years. If you’d like to setup a time to discuss your situation, contact us to setup a free consultation 877-544-5323.

Commercial vehicle accidents are complicated.

There are numerous complicated factors that need to be looked into when it comes to commercial vehicle accidents.  In such an accident, there may be multiple insurance companies involved, which can greatly complicate you getting what you deserve for your injuries.

Your attorney can help ensure your rights are protected when dealing with the trucking company’s insurance company, the owner’s insurance company, the driver’s insurance company, and possibly others.

The recklessness of a truck driver cost a woman her life.

Accidents are often said to happen in the blink of an eye. That’s what happened to one Caroline County woman. A routine stop for gas turned deadly. News reports say she had just pulled out of the gas station parking lot when a Mack truck careened around the corner, crossing the double yellow line and rolling over onto her car. Witnesses attempted to rescue the woman, but tree stumps and branches had spilled onto her car, making it even more difficult to pull her to safety. Police later indicated that the woman – who had not been wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident – died at the scene. The driver of the Mack truck was not injured but was charged with reckless driving. Surveillance cameras at the gas station caught the entire crash on camera.

Police are still investigating this accident, but it’s safe to say speed was likely a factor. Mack trucks are incredibly heavy vehicles that do not overturn easily. The driver must have underestimated the sharpness of the curve in the road and failed to reduce his speed accordingly. That split second decision cost a woman her life.

Truck drivers know the dangers of taking a curve too fast.

When trucks and cars collide, drivers and passengers in the car are almost always in worse shape than the driver of the truck. The sheer size difference between the two types of vehicles make it difficult for a car to withstand the damage a truck can do. Truck drivers are trained to take curves like this one cautiously, but this driver did not heed the warnings.

Our thoughts go out to the family of the victim during this surely difficult time.

One person has died in a tractor trailer crash on the West Norfolk Bridge in Portsmouth. The accident occurred when two semi trucks collided in the eastbound lanes of the Western Freeway. One driver suffered life-threatening injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene, while the other was taken to the hospital with back injuries. Police report that the deceased driver crashed into a jersey wall before striking the other truck.

The accident remains under investigation, as authorities cannot be sure exactly what caused the driver to lose control of his tractor trailer. The truck had been carrying sardines, which spilled over the roadway during the impact. A light pole was also damaged in the crash, falling into the water after being struck. An overhead sign was also damaged in the incident. Traffic was backed up for several hours due to the timing of the wreck – 8:50 on a weekday morning. Commuters faced closed lanes and delays while emergency personnel dealt with the accident.

As the investigation continues, authorities will likely uncover the reason behind this tragic accident. Sadly, most tractor trailer crashes can be avoided. They are often caused by mechanical issues, medical emergencies and even drowsy driving. Regular maintenance and inspections of vehicles as well as time off for sleep and relaxation can do wonders in preventing deadly accidents like this one. Whatever the cause of this wreck, we offer our condolences to the family of the victim and best wishes to the truck driver still recovering from the injuries sustained in the crash.

Virginia Truck Accident Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may want to contact an attorney to discuss your rights. It is critical to hire a lawyer who understands these complex rules and regulations of the trucking industry. If you’d like to speak with someone in our office about your situation, contact us to setup a free consultation.

Virginia Truck Accident Attorney | Richard J. SerpeAn accident involving a passenger vehicle and a tractor trailer along US 58 in Suffolk has landed one woman in the hospital. The wreck occurred in the eastbound lanes of the highway, with both the tractor trailer and the passenger vehicle in the same direction. The tractor trailer struck the back of the car, which caused it to spin and land in a ditch. Rescuers were able to extract the woman and transport her to the hospital with injuries. The driver of the tractor trailer was not injured. Reports indicate that the truck driver has not been charged at this time. An investigation into the collision is pending.

For anyone who has ever driven on US 58, they know it to be a fairly rural stretch of highway. With bucolic Virginia farms on either side of the road, it’s easy to drift off in the peace of the area. Unfortunately, US 58 is also a very highly traveled highway, with family vacationers and commercial trucks sharing the road with local farmers and their tractors. This combination of factors make for potentially dangerous driving conditions.

Though it’s not immediately clear what caused this particular accident, one has to assume that at the very least, the truck driver was likely following too closely. The next time you have a large truck behind you, keep in mind that unlike cars, tractor trailers take much more time and space in order to slow down or stop. If a tractor trailer driver is following too closely, consider safely changing lanes and letting them pass. This will ease your mind and prevent potential accidents from occurring.

Virginia Truck Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may want to contact an attorney to discuss your rights. It is critical to hire a lawyer who understands these complex rules and regulations of the trucking industry. If you’d like to speak with someone in our office about your situation, contact us to setup a free consultation.

One person has died and five others were injured in a crash in Greensboro, North Carolina. Six Virginia motorcyclists had pulled over onto the side of I-85 to take a break from riding when a tractor trailer ran off road, striking the bikers. The early morning crash sent five of the motorcyclists to the hospital with injuries. The sixth rider was tragically killed in the accident.

Reports indicate that authorities are still questioning the driver about how something like this could have happened. Given the early morning hour of the crash – 7 a.m. – it’s possible that drowsy driving may have played a role in the accident. Whatever the cause of this tragedy, we can only hope that justice will be served on behalf of those injured and killed for doing nothing more than pulling over in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Though there might be stereotypes about how dangerous bikers are, the reality is that most accidents involving motorcycles are caused by drivers of cars and trucks. Motorcyclists are highly attuned to change traffic patterns, simply because they are in greater danger on the road than any other kind of vehicle. The sheer size difference between a motorcycle and a tractor trailer is enough to mean serious injury or even death to the rider.

Virginia Truck Accident Lawyer

The Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC has helped victims of accidents for over 29 years. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may want to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. If you’d like to speak with someone in our office, contact us to setup a free consultation today 877-544-5323.

A tractor trailer driver has been charged with reckless driving following an accident in Chesterfield, Virginia. Sources report that the wreck occurred when traffic was stopped along route 288. The truck driver, approaching the traffic, swerved to the right and struck two vehicles. The Honda Civic struck by the tractor trailer then collided with a Ford Explorer. The Ford was also struck by the tractor trailer, and became stuck underneath the truck when it turned over. Finally, the tractor trailer sideswiped a Toyota and rear ended a Mercendes Benz.

Miraculously, only one person reported injuries sustained in this accident. Considering how many vehicles were involved in the incident, it’s incredible more damage wasn’t done. Once police arrived on scene, they charged the tractor trailer driver with reckless driving.

It’s not immediately clear why this accident occurred, but chances are, the driver of the tractor trailer was not as attentive as he or she could have been behind the wheel. Too often, drivers cruise down the highway with no thought as to what might lie around the corner. Drivers of all kinds of cars and trucks make this mistake, but when a tractor trailer driver does so, the consequences are typically much more dramatic. The sheer size difference between the average car and the average tractor trailer spells disaster, should they collide.

The next time you’re driving – particularly during rush hours – remind yourself that clear roads don’t always stay clear. It’s important to remain alert and ready for whatever might lie around the bend.

Virginia Truck Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you may want to contact an attorney to discuss your rights. It is critical to hire a lawyer who understands these complex rules and regulations of the trucking industry. If you’d like to speak with someone in our office about your situation, contact us to setup a free consultation.

Two people are recovering following a crash in Suffolk Monday. The wreck occurred along the 900 block of Carolina Road, WTKR.com reports. The road was closed briefly in both directions as rescuers worked to airlift the driver of a U.S. mail truck and transport the driver of an oil rig to nearby hospitals. Dominion Virginia Power was also at the scene, since a power pole was downed in the wreck. No official cause of the crash has been given, but investigators say the two men involved in the crash are not suffering life-threatening injuries.

Given the kinds of vehicles involved in this crash, the men were lucky to escape with their lives. Oil tankers are incredibly dangerous, particularly when they are involved in car accidents. Many times, they can set fire and even explode. Anytime a vehicle transporting gasoline, diesel or petroleum product, there is risk of the cargo igniting or exploding.

Commercial Trucking Accidents Are Complicated

Our Virginia truck accident attorneys understand there are extensive rules and regulations unique to truck drivers and trucking companies which operate in our state. It is critical to hire a lawyer who understands these complex rules and regulations.

There are numerous complicated factors that need to be looked into when it comes to commercial vehicle accidents.  In such an accident, there may be multiple insurance companies involved, which can greatly complicate you getting what you deserve for your injuries.

Your attorney can help ensure your rights are protected when dealing with the trucking company’s insurance company, the owner’s insurance company, the driver’s insurance company, and possibly others.

Get Help Now. Free Consultations 877-544-5323

A tractor trailer and an UTZ work van collided last week in Southampton County, Virginia. The wreck occurred when the truck driver ran a red light on Southampton Parkway. The UTZ van, turning right onto the Parkway, was struck by the tractor trailer. Sources report that the driver of the van was treated for minor injuries, while the truck driver was charged with reckless driving and failing to maintain proper control.

This accident took place in a fairly rural part of the Commonwealth, along route 58. Too often, drivers become careless in these settings. With fewer cars on the road, some drivers assume they are safe to break some critical traffic laws, like stopping at a red light. Clearly, as evidenced in this incident, those laws must be obeyed even in the most rural of settings.

Red light accidents occur for a variety of reasons, including inattentive drivers, drunk drivers, motorists speeding through a yellow light or drivers making illegal left or right turns on a red light. Such accidents can cause whiplash, spinal cord injuries and other serious injuries. Truck accidents, in particular, are more likely to result in serious injuries than collisions between smaller cars.

We’ve all probably run a red light in our lifetime. In fact, 7 percent of drivers admitted to just that in a survey conducted by the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety. It can be difficult to judge whether to slam on your brakes during a yellow light or to proceed quickly through a changing light. Unfortunately, these split second decisions too often result in dangerous accidents.

You Need an Experienced Truck Accident Lawyer

Commercial Trucking Accidents Are Complicated

Our attorneys understand there are extensive rules and regulations unique to truck drivers and trucking companies which operate in our state. It is critical to hire a lawyer who understands these complex rules and regulations. There are numerous complicated factors that need to be looked into when it comes to commercial vehicle accidents.  In such an accident, there may be multiple insurance companies involved, which can greatly complicate you getting what you deserve for your injuries. Your attorney can help ensure your rights are protected when dealing with the trucking company’s insurance company, the owner’s insurance company, the driver’s insurance company, and possibly others.

Get Help Now. Free Consultations 877-544-5323