Dump trucks are often used at construction sites and road repair sites to transport gravel, dirt, sand, and waste. They’re operated through a hydraulic system that allows the bed to dump materials to the ground by lifting the front of the bed. There are different types of dump trucks including traditional dump trucks, semi-trailer dump trucks, transfer dump trucks, and side dump trucks.
Common reasons dump truck accidents happen
Most dump trucks accidents occur either at the construction site, or while the dump truck is on the road going to or coming from the construction site.
Most accidents are due to a failure to operate the dump truck properly, or when dumping materials without checking to see if there are other people or other vehicles at the site of the dump. Accidents can also happen if:
- The truck operator isn’t properly trained on how to use the truck
- The truck operator works too many hours in a row, in a day, or in a week without getting proper rest
- The truck, the bed, the hydraulics, or some part of the truck are defective
- The driver or the trucking company failed to inspect the truck before using it or failed to make repairs to known problems such as inoperable brakes
- Driver inattention or distraction
- Drivers who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Drivers fail to signal or fail to follow the local traffic laws
Accidents occur because the truck tips over, because the driver loses control, or because debris from the truck bed flies out of the truck or spills on the roadway. Dump trucks also have blind spots which mean drivers should be extra-cautious or work with a spotter when dumping the contents. The loads could be too heavy for the truck. Other reasons may apply depending on the construction site layout and the materials in the truck bed.
Liability in dump truck accidents
Experienced Memphis truck accident lawyers file claims against some or all of the following people and businesses when a dump truck accident occurs:
- The dump truck driver. As a general rule, the driver is liable for any injuries he/she causes while using the truck.
The trucking company that hired the driver. Generally, trucking companies are liable for the accidents of their employees – based on a theory of agency. Agency means the driver was working for the employer at the time of the accident and thus the employer/the trucking company is liable if the employee/driver is liable. The liability of the trucking company depends on many factors such as:
- Was the driver an employee of the trucking company or an independent contractor?
- Did the accident happen during the scope of the truck driver’s employment?
- The construction company. The business that owned or managed the construction site could be liable if it failed to establish rules for other workers on when and how items could be dumped.
- The truck manufacturer. A truck manufacturer can be held accountable if a truck part was defective and the defect caused someone to be hurt.
At Bailey & Greer, PLLC, we seek to hold every responsible person or business accountable for your injuries. We demand compensation for your physical pain, emotional suffering, all your medical bills, and all your lost wages. We have the experience and resources to help you get justice. For help now, call 901-475-7434 or complete our contact form to speak with a skilled Memphis truck accident lawyer. We also have an office in Jackson, and represent clients throughout West Tennessee.