According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, large trucks were involved in more than 13,000 crashes across the state in 2016, resulting in a significant number of injuries and deaths to those who share the road. While these accidents can occur anywhere, nearly one-third of truck crashes occur on the highway. Highway accidents are responsible for many serious injuries to truck drivers, and when they happen, drivers need the medical care and wage replacement benefits that workers’ compensation can provide.
In North Carolina, Bob Bollinger—a Board-Certified Specialist in NC Workers’ Compensation Law—protects the rights of truck drivers and their families. He works diligently to ensure that they are able to obtain all the benefits they deserve. He has litigated more than 100 cases with the state’s Industrial Commission, and his track record proves his commitment to fighting for injured workers and their families. To learn more about Bob and schedule a free strategy session, call our Charlotte office today.
Common Causes of Highway Accidents in North Carolina
There are many factors that contribute to highway accidents and present unique dangers to all those who share the road. Some of the most common causes include:
- High speeds. Speed limits on highways are typically higher than on other types of roads. Traveling faster can make it difficult to adjust a vehicle to changing road conditions or sudden problems. Additionally, higher speeds during inclement weather mean a driver can more easily lose control.
- Fluctuating congestion. On smaller roads, drivers expect a natural ebb and flow of traffic, metered by lights and stop signs. On highways, however, traffic typically moves more freely. Congestion can build up unexpectedly, however, in response to broken-down vehicles, safety forces, accidents, and more. This can be a problem for those on the road who are neither expecting nor prepared for slowdowns.
- Construction. I-85 and I-77 near Charlotte are both heavily congested from construction work right now. Construction zones pop up sometimes unexpectedly, lowering the speed limit and causing delays. Additionally, these zones can be frustrating for drivers, making them more likely to make poor decisions behind the wheel.
- Driver fatigue. Many travelers on the highway are driving a fair distance, and the monotony of the road can be draining. This isn’t a problem limited to commercial drivers; everyday commuters can experience fatigue that affects their ability to safely operate their vehicle as well.
Highway Truck Accidents Can Have Severe Consequences
It’s true that serious injury can accompany any traffic accident, but truck highway crashes involve some unique factors. Most obviously, commercial trucks are larger and heavier than most other vehicles on the road, and they can cause much more severe damage. The injuries caused by these accidents can affect truck drivers for months and even years to come, requiring consistent, expensive medical care. Some of the most common injuries involve complex body structures, including:
- The brain
- The back, neck, or spine
- Knees or hips
Additionally, trucking companies are businesses, and owners (and their insurance companies) will do whatever they can to save money and protect their own bottom line. This might mean they unfairly deny work injury claims or ignore a worker’s injury report altogether. They may also mislead drivers about their rights—workers’ compensation benefits are available to injured employees regardless of fault, so even if a driver shares blame for an accident, he still may be eligible for medical care and wage compensation benefits.
Our Charlotte Workers' Compensation Attorneys Can Help Injured Truck Drivers
If you or someone you love is a truck driver who has suffered injuries on the job, attorney Bob Bollinger can help you understand your rights and ensure they are protected. As a Board-Certified Specialist in NC Workers’ Compensation Law, Bob is recognized as a dedicated and knowledgeable advocate for injured workers in North Carolina. He is here to help you obtain all the benefits you deserve.
Even if you are worried you don’t have a claim or that you’ve already made mistakes that could damage your case, Bob and his team are here to help you move forward successfully. Contact us today to schedule a free strategy session with Bob Bollinger or to request your complimentary copy of our workers’ compensation educational materials.