The Tennessee Highway Patrol closed the westbound lanes of Interstate 40 in Cumberland County after multiple semi-trucks were involved in a collision.
Per a report by WKRN.com, at least one semi-truck overturned during the crash, which occurred just after 1 p.m. near Monterey, Tennessee.
Heavy rainfall from Tropical Storm Cindy may have contributed to the crash, as the interstate was slick at the time of the accident.
A THP spokesperson told reporters that the crash had caused traffic to back up for several miles. It’s unknown if anyone was injured during the multi-truck accident. The THP also said that drivers can expect the westbound lanes to remain closed for several hours as they work to investigate the crash and clear the scene.
Eastbound lanes were unaffected by the accident. It’s unknown what caused the semi-trucks to collide.
What Are Common Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents?
When a semi-truck is involved in an accident, the consequences can be devastating for other drivers—especially those in passenger vehicles. Semi-trucks can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when carrying trailers, making them significantly heavier and larger than even the biggest pickup trucks and SUVs. Other semi-truck drivers also face dangers when they’re involved in collisions with tractor-trailers.
Some of the most common causes of semi-truck accidents include:
- Driver fatigue
Truck drivers—especially long-haul drivers—may work long stretches where they’re on the road for several hours at a time without stopping. However, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration requires that drivers take regular breaks and have days off to stay alert and refreshed behind the wheel. Some drivers violate these regulations to complete trips faster and increase their profits, putting themselves and others at risk.
- Distracted driving
Another adverse effect of driving for long periods of time is the susceptibility to being distracted while behind the wheel. Whether they’re using a smartphone, GPS system, reading, eating, or engaging in any other activity that takes their eyes and mind off the road, distracted truck drivers pose serious threats to all nearby drivers and their passengers.
- Drunk and impaired driving
Getting behind the wheel while under the influence of drugs and alcohol is dangerous for anyone, especially truck drivers. Successfully navigating an 80,000-pound vehicle that’s dozens of feet long and has much a longer stopping distance than passenger vehicles requires extreme concentration and focus. When truck drivers consume alcohol or drugs, they lose their ability to focus and maneuver their vehicles in traffic and around curves, making them more likely to crash.
- Improper truck maintenance
Big trucks and their individual components are designed to drive for hundreds of thousands of miles during their lifetime, but they still require frequent maintenance to keep running at their best. It’s up to truck drivers, truck owners, and trucking companies to make sure their vehicles are properly maintained and serviced to keep them safe, but they may neglect to do so to save time and money.
- Speeding or driving in the wrong lane
Because trucks have much longer stopping distances than other vehicles, truck drivers should never exceed the speed limit. In addition, they should also never drive in the left lane of a highway or interstate. Doing so not only slows traffic, but it can increase the risk of an accident.
As the driver of a passenger vehicle, you can also reduce your risks of being involved in a truck by never cutting off trucks, avoiding their “no-zones,” and allowing them plenty of room to make wide turns.
Unfortunately, some truck drivers engage in multiple dangerous behaviors when they get behind the wheel, putting people like you at significant risk of suffering serious injuries. If you or someone you know was hurt in a truck accident that was caused by a negligent truck driver, you may be eligible to pursue a claim for compensation. Get in touch with our legal team today to find out how we can help.
Call Matt Hardin Law’s team of Cookeville truck accident lawyers by dialing (931) 754-1188 or completing a free online consultation form.