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How Are Truck Drivers At Fault for Wide Turn Accidents?

Wide turns in urban settings are easily made in compact cars; however, 70-80-foot-long tractor-trailers must take caution when making these types of turns. If the turn isn’t executed just right, they could crash into cars in adjacent lanes or make contact with the curb and tip over. When wide-turn accidents happen, truck drivers could be negligent in many ways.

What Are Wide Turn Accidents?

Wide turn accidents occur when trucks make a right or left turn and crash into cars in adjacent lanes. These accidents are most common when trucks make right turns, given the limited space trucks have to complete the turn. However, these accidents could also happen when trucks turn left and fail to judge the distance of oncoming traffic. Wide turns should only be made by experienced drivers to avoid putting others on the road at risk.

Why Are Wide Turn Accidents So Dangerous?

To execute a wide right turn, the truck might have to temporarily swing into the left lane to ensure they have enough room to complete the turn. If truck driver fails to check their blind spots, they could hit the cars in the lane next to them.

A wide right turn is even more dangerous on two-lane roads with oncoming traffic. The truck must ensure the road is clear before temporarily occupying the lane with oncoming traffic.

Cars on the inside lane could also be at risk for a wide-turn accident. When trucks swing into the left lane and back into the right lane to make the turn, cars on the inside could get trapped between the truck and the curb. This situation could cause an underride accident. Wide turn accidents could also result in a rollover accident if the driver doesn’t turn wide enough, and the truck’s wheels run up on the curb.

Rollover accidents could also occur if truck drivers make wide turns at high speeds. If trucks are carrying hazardous chemicals or heavy loads, a rollover accident could cause these materials to spill into the road and potentially cause a fire. Furthermore, pedestrians could be at risk of a wide turn accident if it occurs at a crowded intersection.

How Should Truck Drivers Make Wide Turns?

A safe right turn starts with proper preparation. Drivers must first ensure they are approaching the turn at the right speed. Driving slowly around turns makes it much easier to maneuver trucks around tight corners.

When drivers approach the turn, they should avoid swinging the tractor-trailer into the left lane as much as possible. If they have to turn wide, drivers must do so as they complete the turn rather than at the beginning of the turn.

Turning wide in the beginning could make other drivers think the truck is turning left, which might cause cars to pass trucks on the right. When the truck swings back to the right, it’ll collide with the car and possibly cause an underride accident. If trucks must occupy a lane with oncoming traffic, they must give vehicles enough room to stop or pass by them.

Trucks making wide left turns through intersections should ensure they have adequate space to complete the turn and should consider the length of their trailer. Drivers often misjudge the distance of oncoming traffic and how long it takes for their truck to clear the intersection. Additionally, trucks should always use the left turn lane closest to the curb.

How Are Truck Drivers At Fault for Wide Turn Accidents?

Truck drivers must take necessary precautions before making a wide turn, whether left or right. A truck driver could be negligent in the following ways:

  • Failing to use their turn signals
  • Failing to check their mirrors and surroundings prior to making the turn
  • Making the turn too far from the curb
  • Approaching the turn too fast
  • Swinging trucks into oncoming traffic before it’s clear to do so

The truck’s black box (a type of data recorder), eyewitness statements, and other forms of evidence could help prove the driver’s negligence. You might find the trucking company to be negligent if they hired an inexperienced driver and failed to ensure they knew how to make a proper wide turn.

Let the Law Giant Help You Recover

Determining fault for a wide-turn truck accident can be challenging. A truck accident lawyer at Law Giant Injury Lawyers has the resources to find who’s liable for your damages. We’ll examine all the details of your case and fight for your recovery. Contact the Law Giant today at 505-900-0000 to schedule your free consultation.