On Wednesday, the driver of a dump truck sustained serious injuries after a tire blowout caused his truck to overturn on I-95.
Florida Today reports that Eric Rodriquez Castillo, 41, of Melbourne, was driving a dump truck on I-95 in Melbourne when a tire of the truck blew due to tread separation. This caused him to lose control of the truck and hit a guardrail before the truck overturned. Mr. Castillo was trapped in the truck for two hours before responders with Brevard County Fire Rescue were able to free him, and was transported to a nearby hospital with serious injuries.
Though Mr. Castillo suffered serious injuries in this accident, it is fortunate that no other motorists were hurt. This is not always the case when large trucks, tractor trailers, or semi trucks are involved in crashes, and unfortunately the majority of the victims in truck accidents are occupants of passenger vehicles. In fact, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports that in 2014, 68% of all deaths in trucking accidents “were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles.” There are a number of factors which contribute to injuries and fatalities of passenger vehicle occupants in trucking accidents, including the massive size of many trucks which may weigh up to 20 to 30 times the average car and the fact that it takes a big truck 20 to 40% farther to stop than a passenger vehicle.
When truck drivers or other motorists or passengers sustain injury or are killed in a trucking accident, it is important to fully investigate the cause of the crash to determine if negligence played a role. There are a number of driver-related causes commonly attributed to truck accidents, including:
- Driver fatigue
- Failure to properly secure cargo
- Failure to heed traffic signs or signals
- Driver distraction
- Reckless or aggressive driving
In this recent Florida truck accident, however, it appears that a tire blowout caused the driver to lose control of his vehicle. The long strips of black rubber and rubber debris littering our roadways is evidence that tire blowout is a fairly common issue with large trucks, but just because an issue is common does not always mean it is not preventable. Truck tires should be regularly inspected by truck drivers as well as maintenance crews, trucking companies, and truck owners for signs of damage or excessive wear. Additionally, if a truck tire is not installed correctly, is exposed to too much heat, or is improperly re-treaded or overused it may be more likely to cause a blowout. In recent years, there have also been a number of recalls issued to address potentially defective tires which may show no signs of damage but may be prone to explode, lose tread, or separate without notice.
When individuals suffer as a result of auto or truck accidents, a skilled attorney can help them investigate the cause of the crash and hold any and all negligent parties accountable. For more information on the type of compensation which may be available after a truck accident, please contact us for a free legal consultation with an experienced Florida personal injury lawyer.