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Stopping Distance: Semi-Trucks Vs. Cars

Posted By Aguirre Law | January 8 2024 | Firm News, Personal Injury

Stopping a semi-truck is vastly different from stopping a car. Under typical weather and road conditions, semi-trucks take approximately 40% longer to stop than a passenger vehicle. The driver of the truck has no bearing on physics.

All drivers need approximately 1.5 seconds to react to a road or traffic condition and apply their brakes to avoid a collision. This reaction time is the same regardless of vehicle type

Semi-truck drivers may see danger or road hazards before drivers of passenger cars due to the height of their trucks. They need this advantage as stopping a fully loaded semi-truck can require a distance of around 200 yards. This is the length of two football fields.

Stopping Distance Under Ideal Driving Conditions

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration or FMCSA, under ideal driving conditions:

  1. An average passenger car traveling at a speed of 65 miles per hour would require about 300 feet to stop; and
  2. A fully loaded semi-truck traveling 65 miles per hour would need a stopping distance of approximately 525 feet.

The braking distance of a fully loaded semi-truck increases by four times, meaning as a truck doubles its speed, it requires four times the braking distance.

Semi-Truck Drivers and Trucking Companies are Highly-Regulated

Although stopping a semi-truck is more challenging than stopping a passenger car, truck drivers have special training and licensing to ensure they are qualified to operate their trucks. The trucking industry is a government-regulated industry with federally mandated safety standards.

Truck drivers and trucking companies must follow these regulations to maintain safety and reduce accidents while traveling the country’s roads and highways.

When they fail to do so, they are liable for the damages they cause. If you or your loved one suffered injuries in a semi-truck accident through no fault of your own, speak with an experienced truck accident lawyer in San Antonio about a personal injury claim

You could be entitled to compensation for your accident-related losses

Why Semi-Truck Drivers Fail to Brake On-Time

Sometimes, stopping on time is outside of a truck driver’s control. If a truck driver has a faulty braking system or a malfunctioning vehicle, a maintenance facility or parts manufacturer may be at fault for the mechanical failure and resulting accident.

Another driver may cut a truck driver off and leave the truck driver without sufficient time to stop the truck. Other times, the truck driver or trucking company may be at fault for an accident.

These include but are not limited to:

  • A truck driver who is driving drowsy or tired due to unrealistic scheduling or failing to stop for mandated breaks;
  • A truck driver who is under the influence of drugs or alcohol; and
  • A poorly trained truck driver.

If you have questions about who is liable for your truck accident and paying for your injuries, have your claim reviewed by an experienced truck accident attorney.

Contact an Experienced San Antonio Truck Accident Attorney Today

The Aguirre Law Firm, PLLC, is a successful San Antonio personal injury law firm recommended by former clients and other attorneys. Our skilled car accident attorneys in San Antonio will review your truck accident at no cost and advise you of your legal options.

Do not wait to have your claim evaluated by The Aguirre Law Firm, PLLC. Texas has strict deadlines for filing personal injury claims. Any claims filed outside of these deadlines are barred from receiving compensation.

Call The Aguirre Law Firm, PLLC, now. Our attorneys are bilingual and ready to meet with you!

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