Underride Accidents & TBI
There are over 25,000 truck accidents in California each year. Many of these collisions are caused by reckless truck drivers who are forced to engage in risky behaviors just to meet unrealistic corporate deadlines. Since 2000, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has been trying to regulate the trucking industry, but with little success; so far, it hasn’t been able to stop the greedy business choices that result in deadly equipment failures, overload accidents, rollovers, and, of course, underride accidents.
What Is an Underride Accident?
An “underride accident” is an umbrella term that encompasses any collision where a passenger vehicle slides under the trailer of a speeding, slow-moving, or stalled commercial motor vehicle. These accidents are incredibly dangers because a smaller vehicle can get crushed, pinned, and even dragged by a trailer.
There are three types of underride accidents:
- Front underride collisions
- Rear underride collisions
- Side underride collisions
When an underride accident occurs, there is a 90% chance that the occupants in the passenger vehicle will be killed. In fact, in most incidents, the roof panel of the smaller car is flattened, penetrated, or completely sheared off. Consequently, a survivor usually sustains catastrophic injuries that necessitate lifelong medical treatments and a variety of therapy services.
According to NBC News, “government statistics show that more than 200 people are killed this way every year, gruesome deaths that experts say could be prevented if trucks were required to have side guards to deflect cars.” In 2017, the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety determined that underride guards could reduce injury by 75%. The results of this study inspired a group of U.S. Senators to reintroduce legislation that would force trucking companies to add underride guards to their fleet vehicles. Per the “Stop Underrides Act,” the U.S. Department of Transportation would also include underride guards in their inspection process.
What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
One of the most devastating injuries that an underride accident survivor can sustain is known as traumatic brain injury (TBI). This condition is caused when a jolt or blow to the head disrupts the normal function of the brain, resulting in a medley of physical, cognitive, and behavioral side effects.
The following symptoms and side effects tend to accompany a TBI diagnosis:
- Cognitive issues and disabilities
- Behavioral changes
- Brain death
- Emotional recognition problems
- Communication issues
- Blood vessel damage
- Depression and anxiety
- Cognitive degeneration
Understandably, many underride accident victims struggle to afford their escalating injury-related expenses, especially when their respective conditions prevent them from holding gainful employment. If you find yourself in this position, it’s critical that you contact an experienced truck accident attorney as quickly as possible.
Because multiple parties can be held accountable for a single truck accident, your legal team may need to negotiate with several insurance providers to obtain a favorable settlement. This may sound like a daunting prospect, but you don’t want to accept a lowball settlement offer just to avoid the negotiation process. At the Scarlett Law Group, our award-winning legal team can investigate your case, calculate your claim’s maximum value, and negotiate with the defendant’s insurance provider on your behalf.
You may have grounds to file a claim against the following parties:
- The trucking company
- The trucker
- The cargo company
- The truck manufacturer
Learn More by Scheduling a Free Consultation
Contact the Scarlett Law Group if you or a loved one has sustained a TBI due to the actions of a negligent trucker. Our trucking accident attorneys have the experience, skills, and resources to fiercely defend your interests both in and out of court.
Call the Scarlett Law Group at (415) 688-2176 to schedule a consultation today.