With the number of major freeways running throughout Portland, semi-trucks, tractor trailers, and other big rigs are a common sight on local roads. Due to their extreme weight and size, these massive machines are harder to handle than other vehicles and truck accidents are a common occurrence. Several recent fatal truck accidents in the Portland area emphasize the need to take safety precautions that can help reduce your risks.
Truck Accidents in Portland Prove Fatal for Drivers Involved
Two recent fatal truck accidents in and around Portland resulted in the death of drivers involved. In one incident that occurred in late August 2019, a semi-truck driver slammed into a sign bridge while merging onto the Interstate 5 near SW Barbur Boulevard. A KOIN 6 news report claims the driver apparently lost control of the vehicle and slid across the freeway, striking a barrier before bursting into flames. The truck driver involved was pronounced dead at the scene.
In another recent truck accident that happened on U.S. 26 near Hillsboro, a truck driver again lost control of his vehicle. According to news reports by OregonLive, the truck jackknifed and crashed into a barrier, striking three other cars in the process. While one of the motorists was taken to a local hospital and is expected to recover, another suffered fatal injuries in the collision.
Reducing the Risks of Truck Accidents
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) reports that over 2,000 truck accidents involving semi-trucks, 18 wheelers, tractor trailers, and other big rigs happen each year throughout the state. Considering these vehicles can weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds, the impacts of truck accidents are often severe.
Truck drivers and the companies they work for can reduce the risk of these types of crashes by following a few simple safety precautions:
- Provide proper driver training for all truckers in the fleet;
- Avoid reckless driving behaviors such as speeding and driving under the influence;
- Practice proper truck maintenance before each trip;
- Make sure cargo is distributed properly in holding areas;
- Avoid over scheduling and excessively tight deadlines while allowing truckers plenty of time for breaks while on the road.
When truck drivers and the companies they work for fail to take the above precautions, they can be held liable when serious and potentially life threatening injuries occur. Motorists can reduce their risk of being involved in truck accidents by giving truck drivers plenty of room on the road and avoiding dangerous behaviors such as improper passing. Be wary of no zones, which are areas in front and alongside the truck where motorists disappear from the driver’s view. Use particular caution when sharing curved roads and at intersections, where truck accidents frequently occur.
Contact Us Today for Help
When truck accidents impact you or your loved ones, the Johnston Law Firm helps you hold drivers and the company they work for accountable. Reach out and call (503) 546-3167 or contact our Portland truck accident attorneys online and request a consultation to discuss how we can help you.