When you think of truck accidents, collisions with garbage trucks might not immediately come to mind. However, for
some unfortunate drivers, this type of accident is a reality. Sometimes a garbage truck hits a bicyclist or pedestrian, causing serious injuries or even death. The same can occur when a garbage truck collides with another vehicle.
If you have been a victim of a garbage truck collision, you need to know what your next step should be in order to protect yourself. First, you should learn about some frequent causes of garbage truck accidents, and then you can get an idea of how to proceed with your case.
Common Causes of Garbage Truck Accidents
Most of the causes of garbage truck accidents are the fault of the driver. For example, some drivers operate their truck while fatigued, impaired, or talking or texting on the phone. Even the drivers who pay attention to the road might not necessarily obey the traffic laws, which means they switch lanes without signaling, tailgate other cars, ignore traffic signs, and just drive recklessly in general.
Some garbage truck accidents are related to a lack of upkeep on the truck. For example, the alarms that are supposed to sound when they back up might be broken, allowing them to back into other vehicles. They might also have improperly secured loads, bald tires, or faulty brakes, any of which can cause an accident. Regardless of the issue with the garbage truck, any resulting accidents are typically considered the fault of the driver or his or her employer.
What You Can Do After a Collision with a Garbage Truck
What you do right after a garbage truck collides with your vehicle can have long-term effects, so make sure you follow these steps.
- Seek medical attention when necessary. This may seem obvious if you have any injuries you notice right away, but many people develop injuries within the days and weeks that follow the accident. Even slight neck or back pain is a reason to see a doctor, preferably the same day as the garbage truck accident.
- As you wait for the police or ambulance to arrive on the scene, obtain the contact information of the garbage truck driver, including his or her name, employer’s name, and insurance information. You should also obtain the contact information of any witnesses. During this time, do not admit fault for the accident or even apologize. Many drivers do this automatically, simply because they’re in shock and do not know what else to
say, but it could affect your case.
- Take pictures of your car after the garbage truck accident so you can get a clear record of the damage. If you have time, take photos of even the interior if you see anything out of place, such as your stereo on the floor of the car, or your deployed airbag.
- Contact your insurance company and report the accident with the garbage truck.
- Contact a lawyer who handles cases involving garbage truck accidents. Be prepared to explain the details of the accident and whether you have pictures and witness information. Then you can schedule a consultation with the lawyer to determine how you should proceed.
Don’t forget to obtain a copy of the police report regarding the accident as soon as it is available. You may need this as additional evidence for your case.