Garbage Truck Accidents

San Francisco Truck Accident Attorneys

Waste disposal trucks are necessary to maintain a city’s cleanliness. However, due to the large size of garbage trucks, these trucks can be extremely dangerous to other passenger vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Since these vehicles are required to move down narrow and high-traffic streets, accidents involving garbage trucks can be fatal. In fact, according to a report by Right of Way, garbage trucks kill 24 cyclists, pedestrians, and other non-drivers per 100 million miles driven – far more than any other vehicle on the road.

If you or someone you love has been harmed in a garbage truck accident, contact the San Francisco garbage truck accident lawyers at Scarlett Law Group to request a free case evaluation. We may be able to help you recover financial compensation.

Causes of Garbage Truck Accidents

Garbage accidents are more common than many people think. In fact, it has been reported that garbage trucks kill roughly eight people every year.

Below is a list of the different causes of garbage truck accidents:

1. Blind spots

Because garbage trucks are large and have a limited amount of windows, many drivers may fail to see pedestrians, bikers, or passenger vehicles, leaving these smaller vehicles at high risk for injury if a collision occurs.

2. Poor maintenance

If a company does not carefully maintain a garbage truck, these vehicles can be extremely dangerous. Many of the mechanisms on these vehicles are designed to lift and move heavy objects. If these large mechanisms fail when a person is nearby, he/she can be severely injured.

3. Incompetent drivers

Due to the various mechanisms on these vehicles, garbage truck drivers must be properly trained. If a driver does not have the necessary knowledge to operate such a large vehicle with potentially dangerous mechanisms, persons nearby may suffer severe injuries.

4. Impatient drivers

Because garbage truck operators must drive extensive routes over long shifts, many drivers become impatient and work excessively fast, creating a dangerous work environment. Impatient drivers may begin driving without first looking for pedestrians or surrounding vehicles, leaving these people at risk for extreme harm.

5. Careless drivers

Drivers may become overly fatigued and develop careless driving habits. Oftentimes, truck drivers will reverse without looking for other persons or vehicles. In addition, they may move toward curbs without checking, leaving bystanders at high risk for injuries.

Preventing Garbage Truck Accidents

To prevent these types of truck accidents, drivers should:

  • Find all workers, either directly or in mirrors, before moving in any direction. Stop backing immediately if you can’t see all workers
  • Avoid sudden starts or stops that could cause riders to be thrown from riding steps
  • Wait for step riders to signal before putting the truck in motion

Garbage truck crewmembers should:

  • Ride in the cab or a separate vehicle when not on the collection route
  • Use riding steps only when the truck is moving forward for short distances (<0.2 mi.) at slow speeds (<10 mph)
  • Ride facing the side of the truck with both hands on the handholds
  • Step (do not jump) off steps only after the truck has completely stopped
  • Wear slip-resistant footwear and avoid narrow cleats or spikes
  • Be aware of the driver’s blind spot – if you can’t see the driver in the mirror, he can’t see you

Call Us if You Have Been Injured in a Garbage Truck Accident

Contact the San Francisco personal injury attorneys at Scarlett Law Group if you or someone you love has been involved in an accident with a garbage truck. We are here to protect your rights and see that you receive the compensation you deserve. Do not hesitate. Let us represent you.

To discuss your case, contact Scarlett Law Group today.

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