Toll plazas can be awkward, dangerous areas for driving. When it comes to merging from highway speeds into tight booths, and then merging back into highway lanes and off-ramps is a task that puts most drivers on guard for dangerous movements and bad drivers. It makes matters worse when those bad drivers are in multi-ton tractor-trailers with limited visibility.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, whether at a toll plaza or anywhere else on the road, take your case to a truck accident attorney. Reiff and Bily’s The Truck Accident Team handles cases for truck accident victims across the country, fighting to get them compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Toll Plaza Dangers
Most toll plazas are hot spots for congested traffic, frantic driving, and confusing lane changes. Approaching a toll plaza often means quickly reducing speed, all while jockeying for position among other drivers. It is often very unclear how your use of a turn signal conveys which of the multiple lanes you are trying to use. After leaving the toll plaza, it may be difficult for drivers to switch sides and get to the proper ramp. All of this means that cars are moving between lanes at varying speeds, and various levels of aggression, all moving toward competing goals.
This situation is ripe for traffic accidents – and is greatly exacerbated when large trucks are involved. Often, these trucks are not able to maneuver with as much agility as passenger vehicles. Trucks often weigh up to the national legal limit of 80,000 pounds, and sit at around 65 feet in length. This means that it is very difficult for large trucks to slow down, once they get moving, and they can take up to 20 times the typical stopping distance for passenger vehicles traveling the same speed.
Especially concerning in toll plazas is the limited visibility of truck drivers. Because of the way trucks are designed, there are often large blind spots immediately behind the trailer, immediately in front of the cab, and behind the cab on either side of the vehicle. These four areas are some of the most dangerous places to drive near trucks – but at toll plazas, it is often difficult to avoid these zones. Since many of these blind spots are at least the size of a vehicle, trucks may make dangerous moves without even seeing other cars in their way.
When truck drivers misjudge which lane they should use or other drivers interfere, trucks may make sudden, dangerous moves at toll plazas. Despite the reduced speed of driving at a toll plaza, these trucks are still capable of crushing other vehicles in their way.
Further, while technologies like E-ZPass, SunPass, Fastrak, or other electronic toll collections increase the speed and ease of highway and freeway tolls, they still create their own dangers. Many truck drivers, for various reasons, still use standard toll plaza booths, rather than the express lanes. This often means that trucks need to leave the left lane to pass through tollbooths, and may create a huge danger to multiple lanes of travel.
Suing for Truck Accident Injuries
When you or a loved one is injured in an accident with a large truck, you often have many options for how to receive compensation for your injuries. Trucking companies and their insurance companies are often willing to pay money to compensate truck accident victims for their injuries. Many times, though, those payments fall well below your needs. It is important never to accept an early settlement from a trucking company before speaking with an attorney about what your case might be worth.
Taking the truck driver who injured you and their employer, the trucking company, to court may yield you the maximum compensation. Insurance payouts and offers to settle often fail to include damages you need, such as compensation for your pain and suffering. Taking your case to court with an experienced truck accident injury attorney may be the only way to receive all of the compensation you are entitled to.
If you have lost a loved one to a truck accident, you may also be able to collect compensation for your losses. In most states, the spouse, parents, or children (or another heir or representative) is able to sue for the death of a loved one. This may mean high compensation for your loved one’s pain and suffering, funeral costs, and your loss of companionship.
National Truck Accident Injury Attorneys
If you suffered injuries in an accident with a truck at a toll plaza – or in any accident with a truck – our attorneys may be able to take your case to court. If you have lost a loved one in a trucking accident, you may also be entitled to compensation. Call the truck accident attorneys at Reiff and Bily’s The Truck Accident Team today for a free consultation about your trucking injury case at (800) 896-6173.