Introduction to Lorry Accidents and HGV Accidents
About Lorry Accidents and HGV Accidents
Being involved in any road accident is a terrifying experience but when a lorry or HGV is involved it can make things even worse. Due to the sheer size and weight of lorries and HGV's, impacts with them tend to be a lot more forceful resulting in higher levels of damage to the vehicles involved and more serious injuries to the drivers or any passengers and pedestrians involved.
Regardless of whether you were the lorry driver or another road user, if you have been involved in a road accident which has involved a lorry or an HGV and the accident was not your fault, you may be able to make a personal injury compensation claim.
To find out how Thompsons Solicitors may be able to help you, call us on 08000 224 224 or complete one of our online personal injury compensation claim forms.
Common causes of Lorry Accidents and HGV Accidents
How Lorry Accidents and HGV Accidents happen
Some accidents are more common to lorry drivers and HGV drivers but they can obviously be involved in exactly the same type of accidents as other vehicles on the road and the accident can be the fault of the lorry driver or the other driver involved. Some of the most common ways road accidents occur are below:
Tailgating - A term used to describe a vehicle travelling too close to the vehicle in front. This is a very dangerous practice as if the vehicle ahead has to brake for any reason, tailgating increases the chances of colliding with the rear of it.
Failure to look properly - When attempting to make a manoeuvre such as changing lanes or pulling out from a junction or onto a roundabout, it is important to check thoroughly for any vehicles already established there before you make a move. Lorry drivers and HGV drivers should pay particular attention as they may have a larger blind spot than other road users which can lead to sideswiping accidents.
Fatigue / illness and alcohol or drugs - Falling asleep at the wheel has been the cause of many road accidents, some of them involving fatalities. You should never drive when tired and if you are making a long journey which lorry drivers and HGV drivers often do, you should take regular breaks for refreshments and to sleep if necessary. Some drugs can cause drowsiness including over-the-counter cold and flu remedies so particular care should be taken when driving if you are ill. You should never drive whilst under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Mobile Phones - It is illegal to talk on a hand-held mobile telephone when driving as it is an unnecessary distraction and can contribute to accidents. If you must use the telephone whilst driving you should invest in a legal and approved hands-free system.
Condition of vehicles - All vehicles being driven on a public road have to be maintained to a certain standard and all drivers should regularly check the condition of their vehicles as well as arranging the annual MOT test (for vehicles over 3 years old). Tyres should be checked before each journey as worn or damaged tyres can cause serious accidents, particularly if you are travelling at speed or in adverse weather conditions.
High Winds - High winds are particularly dangerous to motorists driving high-sided vehicles such as lorries or HGV's. If high winds are forecasted and you are a lorry driver or HGV driver, it would be advisable to plan your route to avoid exposed or high roads such as motorway flyovers, bridges or viaducts, particularly if you are driving with an empty trailer as this is when high winds are most dangerous to you. Drive slower than usual and take care when changing lanes.
Bridge Strikes - Drivers of larger vehicles such as lorries or HGV's should always be vigilant for low bridges which provide no access for high-sided vehicles.
Badly loaded vehicles - Vehicles with poorly secured or poorly stacked loads are prone to turning over or shedding their loads. If you load your own vehicle, you should do so carefully and properly. If our vehicle is loaded for you, you should check that the work has been done to a high standard before setting off.
If you have been injured in a lorry accident or HGV accident, you may be able to make a personal injury claim for compensation. For more information about how Thompsons Solicitors can help you, call us on 08000 224 224 or complete one of our online personal injury compensation claim forms.