A loaded semitrailer truck can weigh 25 times more than an average passenger car. That simple fact explains why truck accidents are among the most deadly accidents on Nevada roads. Any collision between a big-rig truck and a smaller vehicle can lead to catastrophic injuries for the people in the smaller vehicle.
Recently, in Douglas County, about 30 minutes from Reno, a driver was sent to the hospital after a semitrailer pulling a load of live cattle collided with a station wagon. News reports did not reveal the condition of the hospitalized driver of the station wagon. The truck driver was not reported to have been injured. Of the 66 cattle in the truck's trailer, 25 were killed, police said.
According to police, the truck driver ran a red light before hitting the station wagon.
In addition to the greater risk of serious injury, truck accidents also raise different legal issues that typical car accidents. After someone is injured in an accident caused by a negligent driver, Nevada law provides that the negligent driver may be found liable for medical expenses and other damages suffered by the injured. However, when the negligent driver was behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle, there may be other parties liable as well.
In some cases, a trucking company may be held liable for an accident under the legal theory of respondeat superior, which holds employers liable for damages caused by their employees. A trucking employer may also be held at least partially liable if the accident was partly the result of the company violating federal trucking regulations, such as those designed to reduce the dangers of truck driver fatigue.
Exactly how liability might apply can only be determined after an investigation of the case. A Nevada attorney may be able to help the injured to understand how the law may apply to their unique circumstances.
Source: KTVN.com, "2-Vehicle Accident Shuts Down Douglas County Intersection," March 12, 2014