It’s widely known that trucks have larger blind spots than average cars. Commercial truck drivers can seldom see behind or to the sides of their vehicles while driving. However, they know how to maneuver around these limitations and ensure the safety of all road users. Unfortunately, accidents still occur, and it can be quite confusing to determine who’s at fault in California courts. Usually, the following factors are at play.
Carelessness or recklessness
The law holds every road user to a standard of care. This means that all drivers must act responsibly by obeying speed limits, following traffic rules and taking general precautions while driving. If the truck driver was negligent in any way leading up to an accident, then the judge will hold them liable for damages.
Similarly, if the driver in the average car was not taking the necessary steps to avoid the accident, such as driving at a safe speed or paying attention to their surroundings, the court may hold them accountable. In either case, victims of an accident caused by a truck blind spot may be eligible for compensation.
Force majeure refers to unforeseeable circumstances or events beyond a person’s control that prevent them from fulfilling an obligation, such as adhering to road rules or avoiding an accident. In the context of semi truck accidents, force majeure can include scenarios like sudden, extreme weather changes, unexpected road conditions or mechanical failures that the commercial truck driver may not have anticipated or prevented.
For instance, if a truck’s brake system malfunctions despite regular maintenance, causing the truck to hit a car in its blind spot, the court can consider this force majeure. In such cases, they may not hold the truck driver liable for the accident.
In the complex arena of accident liability, understanding the nuances of how blind spots and factors, like carelessness or force majeure, come into play is crucial. Always remember each situation is unique, and it’s imperative to understand how the law might apply to you when navigating your case.