Winter weather tends to come abruptly to Portland, bringing freezing temperatures, heavy fog, and icy roads. In addition to increasing the likelihood of motor vehicle crashes and collisions, it makes truck accidents more likely to occur. These create hazards for everyone on the roads and it is important to be aware of how bad weather increases your risks.
Winter Weather Makes Truck Accidents in Portland More Likely to Happen
When truck accidents in Portland happen, it is often due to the reckless behaviors of drivers. Speeding, tailgating, driving distracted, and being under the influence of alcohol or drugs all make truck accidents more likely to occur. When truck drivers engage in these types of behavior during adverse weather conditions, it only increases the risks.
According to reports from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), of the nearly six million motor vehicle accidents which occur each year, nearly a quarter can be attributed to adverse weather conditions. Impacts which are likely to affect drivers of tractor trailers, 18 wheelers, and other big rigs include:
- Wet, slippery roads;
- Poor visibility due to fog and glare;
- Increased likelihood for traffic tie ups;
- Road closures and lane restrictions.
While it is natural to think that heavy snowfalls and accumulations would be among the biggest dangers, the fact is that rain is more of a concern. The FHWA estimates that close to 50 percent of weather related crashes occur over rainy days and nights while two thirds of all accidents in general involved wet road conditions. With the amount of rain Portland experiences over the winter months, residents of our area need to be aware of the dangers.
How Adverse Weather Makes Truck Accidents More Likely to Happen
Truck accidents are the most potentially dangerous type of crash. The massive size and weight of most heavy trucks provides a level of protection for the driver. As a result, it is generally other motorists involved who suffer the biggest impacts when truck accidents happen.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that more than 4,000 people are killed in truck accidents each year while tens of thousands of others suffer serious injuries. Poor weather conditions are a leading factor in these crashes. Impacts truckers are likely to experience on wet, icy roads in Portland include:
- Poor tire traction;
- Decreased stopping ability;
- Increased blind spots on the road;
- Increased mechanical difficulties;
- Greater risks for rollover accidents.
In general, truckers need 20 to 40 feet more space to stop or respond to changes in traffic conditions than other motorists. In adverse weather, this discrepancy is even greater, making rear end truck accidents more likely as well.
Let Us Help You Today
When you or someone you love is injured in a truck accident, the Johnston Law Firm, P.C. is here to help you get the compensation you are entitled to in a claim. Call (503) 546-3167 or contact our Portland truck accident attorneys online request a consultation to discuss how we can assist you today.