More than 25,000 traffic accidents occurred in construction zones in Texas in 2022, resulting in 205 deaths and nearly 800 serious injuries, according to TxDOT. Several of those wrecks involved 18-wheelers and other large commercial trucks. If you ever get hurt in a crash with a large truck in a work area, you’ll want to know who might be held responsible.
Why Truck Accidents Occur in Construction Zones in Texas
Truck wrecks in construction areas can occur for a wide variety of reasons, many of which can be traced back to negligence on the part of the truck driver. Drivers can cause accidents when they are:
- Following too closely: Traffic in construction zones can slow down or come to a stop, seemingly out of nowhere. When a trucker is tailgating someone, it can lead to a severe rear-end collision.
- Driving distracted: Like drivers of regular vehicles, truckers far too often engage in texting, talking on the phone or eating, all of which take their eyes off the road.
- Driving under the influence: Construction zones demand even more attention than normal, and a trucker who has consumed drugs or alcohol can’t pay adequate attention. They can miss detour signs, hit barriers and even strike workers on the side of the road.
- Driving without enough rest: Tired truck drivers are a hazard in work zones. Tiredness can affect them just as much as drinking or drug use.
- Speeding: Construction zones require traffic to slow down, but truckers are often under pressure to make deliveries, which means they sometimes ignore speed limits.
In these cases, the truck driver may be held liable for crashes they cause in construction zones. However, it is equally likely that the trucking company for whom they work will bear as much or more responsibility, because the law usually makes employers liable for the actions of their employees.
Could Governments or Construction Workers Be Liable?
City and state governments often hire contractors to perform road work. Those entities have a duty to maintain a work zone that’s reasonably safe for vehicles, pedestrians and others in the area. Depending on the circumstances, it may be possible that a construction company or the city or state who hired them could be held liable for injuries caused in a truck crash in the work zone.
Some examples of negligence that could lead to liability are:
- Failing to ensure that there is adequate lighting in the construction zone at night
- Neglecting to place proper signs in work areas
- Not properly training their workers, including flaggers
- Not taking reasonable steps to close roadways that feed into the construction zone
Get a Free Consultation With a Texas Truck Accident Lawyer
If you suffered a serious injury in a work zone truck accident in East Texas, reach out to the lawyers of Ted B. Lyon & Associates in Dallas. We offer a free initial consultation. Get yours by calling 877-Ted-Lyon / 877-833-5966 or contact us online anytime.