If a garbage truck causes an injury, an attorney will be an important ally when seeking restitution. Waste management vehicles are ubiquitous and an essential part of a city’s infrastructure, but they have to be handled carefully, or they can cause devastating accidents. Pedestrians, cyclists, and children are at increased risk, and, in fact, waste management vehicles typically cause more pedestrian deaths than any other commercial vehicle per 100,000 miles traveled. Even workers on the vehicle are at major risk, as they can be pulled under the vehicle or harmed by the heavy machinery on board.
WHAT NORMALLY CAUSES A GARBAGE TRUCK ACCIDENT INJURY?
An attorney experienced with these claims knows that waste management vehicles are some of the most dangerous on the road. That may seem counterintuitive because they travel so slowly, but waste management vehicles make frequent stops, and drivers have poor visibility around their vehicle. If they aren’t paying attention, drivers can easily hit a pedestrian or back up into a car they don’t see. And because they spend most of their time in neighborhoods, these vehicles are a major danger to children, which may be fascinated by their size and the sounds they make.
Waste management vehicles also pose a couple of unique dangers. For one, most new vehicle models use a gripping arm to pick up trash cans and dump them. During this process, debris may be accidentally scattered on the road or flung around. This can represent a road hazard for other cars, and flying debris can strike pedestrians and cause serious trauma.
Workers are also at risk when working around the truck, as it can catch clothing or hair and crush the worker. For the sake of people around the vehicle and people working on it, the driver must pay close attention at all times.
It is also essential that the company in charge of the vehicles maintain them properly. Commercial vehicles rely on powerful braking systems to make clean, safe stops. The gripping arm has to be precise and hold trash cans tightly. The vehicle’s hold has to close tightly and keep debris from escaping. The vehicle’s tires have to be monitored for excess wear and protection against blowouts. If any of these basic maintenance measures are ignored, the vehicle may sustain a sudden mechanical failure and put a lot of people at risk. Regular inspections and maintaining a crew of skilled repair professionals can prevent mechanical failure, but a company has to commit to both.
When a lawyer takes on a garbage truck accident injury case, the attorney has to fight for the victim’s present and future condition. The immediate medical expenses are often staggering, but the long-term costs can be even more prohibitive. With physical therapy and lost wages, an accident can impact a person for many years. A lawyer’s job is to ensure the financial impact is as minimal as possible, and to help the victim get their life back to normal.