Truckers Who Make Improper Left Turns Cause Serious Accidents

When the cause of the accident is attributed to a truck driver, in 88% of these instances it is the truck driver’s fault, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Problems with the vehicle or environmental factors may be to blame for the other accidents.

For example, truck drivers who make an illegal or improper left turn can cause serious wrecks with vehicles traveling straight through the intersection in the opposite direction, or with other vehicles on the road. Turning left into the path of oncoming vehicles can create dangerous crashes where the oncoming vehicle may crash head-on into the truck or may even slide under the trailer. Some left turns might even be illegal.

Making an Illegal Left Turn

An Illegal left turn is made from an area that is not designated for left turns, such as the right lane, an area where left turns are clearly prohibited, or while the light is red.

Drivers might make an illegal left turn because they are:

  • fatigued;
  • under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
  • working under pressure and taking risks to meet deadlines; or
  • distracted.

Keep in mind that under Ohio law, drivers can make a left turn at a red light as long as the truck/car stops first and makes the turn only from the extreme left lane of a one-way street to the extreme left lane of another one-way street.

Making an Improper Left Turn

The “Ohio Commercial Driver License Manual” says a truck driver should make a left turn only after reaching the center of the intersection. If a driver fails to wait until reaching the center of the intersection, it can cause the truck to become incorrectly aligned and drift into other lanes. Truck drivers should also take the right-most left turn lane if more than one left turn lane is available; this can prevent the trailer from swinging to the right and hitting vehicles next to it.

The same factors that may lead a driver to make an illegal left turn might factor into making an improper left turn as well. But an additional factor could also be at play: the driver may lack proper training and doesn’t understand the mechanics of making a left turn in a vehicle of that size. Trucking companies are required to ensure their drivers have the requisite training to safely operate the vehicle.

How Bressman Law Can Help You

If you have been injured in an accident involving a large truck in Ohio, find legal help from an attorney familiar with these types of accidents. There can be several parties that are liable for the accident depending on the circumstances, including a trucking company that hired poorly-trained drivers. Trucking companies may even be liable regardless of their own negligence, as they are responsible for their employees’ actions.

Call Bressman Law at 877-538-1116 to set up an appointment to review liability and your recoverable damages.