Legal Options if Injured by Speeding Truck Driver
Despite their training, professional drivers can put lives at risk when they decide to drive faster than the posted speed limit or than the conditions safely allow. If you were injured in a trucking accident, contact an Ohio injury lawyer right away, who can work for you and will seek fair compensation.
Speeding Truck Drivers
Were you injured in an accident caused by a trucker driving too fast? Speeding truck drivers are a consistent reason for trucking accidents across the country. Their decision to disobey the law and drive too fast is negligence, and it may make the trucker and their employer responsible for compensating you for your injuries.
Speeding Truck Drivers Present a Serious Crash Risk
When any type of vehicle moves too fast, it becomes more difficult to stop in time to avoid a collision. It is also harder to recognize potential hazards or to control the vehicle. Driving too fast on certain types of roads or rough pavement conditions can be dangerous. Similarly, exceeding a speed that is lower than the speed limit may be dangerous in congested traffic or dangerous weather.
When truck drivers move faster than they should, the risks of a crash increases exponentially. Trucks are already harder to stop. They can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, which means they are consistently being pushed forward. Heavy vehicles need considerable distances to slow down due to this momentum. Speeding truck drivers greatly increase the chance that they cannot stop in time to avoid hitting another vehicle.
Speeding and Ohio Law
According to Ohio Revised Code Section 4511.21, no one is allowed to operate a vehicle at a speed greater or less than what is reasonable and proper in regard to traffic, surface, and width of the road, and any other conditions. No one is allowed to operate a vehicle on a road at a speed greater than will permit them to stop with a clear distance ahead. Also, it is illegal for anyone to exceed a speed limitation posted in the area.
Ohio law defines appropriate speed limits for different types of areas when a maximum speed is not posted. Truckers need to be aware of these rules to ensure they are not violating the law or putting others on the road in danger.
Speed limits in Ohio include:
- Alleyways within municipalities are 15 mph
- School zones are 20 mph
- Municipalities except for state routes, highways, and alleys are 25 mph
- State routes and highways within municipalities are 35 mph
- State routes, highways, and expressways within municipalities are 50 mph
- Highways and expressways outside of municipalities are 55 mph
- Freeways with paved shoulders inside municipalities are 55 mph
- Freeways outside of municipalities are 55 mph
- Two-land routes outside of municipalities are 60 mph
- Rural divided highways are 60 mph
- Rural expressways without traffic signals are 65 mpg
- Rural freeways are 70 mpg
These speed limits offer an appropriate speed during good weather and light to moderate traffic. Truckers are still required to move at a speed that is safe for the road, traffic, and weather conditions at the time. They can be ticketed for moving under these speed limits if there are issues with the road, a construction zone, heavy traffic, poor weather, or other conditions that require operating at a slower pace.
Speeding Can Be a Sign of Negligence
While truckers can be ticketed for speeding when they drive faster than the posted maximum speed, they can also be ticketed when they are driving below the posted speed limit when that speed is too great for the current conditions or would not allow them to stop in time to avoid an accident. Your accident could have been caused by speeding even if the trucker was moving 45 mph on a 55 mph highway. The trucker may have been speeding in relation to the present conditions, even if they were moving below the posted or statutory speed limit. You should speak with an Ohio truck accident lawyer at KNR about the speed at which you were moving and how fast you believe the truck was moving at the time of your accident.
Proving Truck Driver Speeding Was Negligence
Do not assume speeding cannot be used to prove negligence in your personal injury case if the trucker was not ticketed by the police. While a ticket or conviction for speeding can boost your argument, it is not essential. If you and your attorney can show moving at 45 mph on that specific road in the conditions at the time of the crash was unsafe, then you have evidence of the trucker’s negligence.
There are multiple ways to demonstrate the trucker was speeding at the time of the collision and that this was a factor in the accident that hurt you. The truck’s “black box,” which is a digital recording device, will show how fast the truck was moving and when it began to slow down – if it did at all – prior to the collision. Your attorney can also use video footage from nearby surveillance cameras or inside the truck’s cab as well as witness statements to prove that the speed was too fast for the conditions at the time. Additionally, expert witnesses can discuss what speeds would have been appropriate or inappropriate at the time.
Our Ohio Trucking Accident Lawyers Can Help
If you were in a trucking accident, it may not be apparent that speeding was a contributing factor right away. That is why it is crucial that you speak with an experienced Ohio truck accident attorney from KNR as soon as possible. After being hurt in an accident, you may not have any idea what happened. We are here to thoroughly investigate the crash, determine what caused the collision, and learn who is responsible for compensating you for your injuries. We have decades of experience in handling these types of cases and we know how to determine if speeding was a factor and how to prove it.