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When might a truck driver be liable for a truck accident?

Auto collisions in New York and elsewhere occur for a number of reasons. Some are purely accidents, while others are the results of negligent actions of one of the drivers involved. A truck accident is no different. When a crash with a commercial truck happens, it is okay to wonder if the truck driver's actions led to the wreck and if that individual and/or his or her employer may be held accountable for any damages one has sustained.

There are many common causes of truck accidents. Those in passenger vehicles do need to take care when sharing the road with big rigs, as truck drivers do have to deal with pretty obstructed views. Numerous collisions occur as a result of drivers trying to maneuver around these trucks. However, an obstructed view is not an excuse for some truck drivers' actions, nor does it mean that they are not responsible when accidents happen.

Trucking accidents often occur due to poor driver training, fatigue, speeding and/or impairment. Those who are granted licenses to drive larger commercial trucks are supposed to go through rigorous training, but this does not always happen. Truck drivers are also on very tight schedules. While strict regulations are in place regarding the speed at which trucks can travel, how many hours drivers are allowed to be behind the wheel and impairment policies, the need to meet deadlines pushes drivers to their limits, which may lead to collisions.

When a truck accident occurs, whether in New York or elsewhere, a number of factors will be considered before fault will be decided. If it can be shown that a truck driver violated company and/or federal regulations, he or she and the associated trucking company may be financially responsible for the crash. In such cases, victims or -- in the event of fatality -- surviving family members may have legal recourse.

Source: FindLaw, "Common Causes of Truck Accidents", Accessed on April 11, 2016

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