Truck Accidents in the Mountains of Colorado
Mountain driving is often necessary for truckers, but it requires proper caution and skill. Truck drivers who do not know how to safely operate their trucks in the Rockies pose a danger to other vehicles on the road. Sadly, many accidents happen each year when truck drivers are negligent or reckless on steep gradients and mountain passes.
At Coppola & Melonakis we represent the victims of accidents caused by trucks and other commercial vehicles whose drivers were unable or unwilling to safely navigate mountain conditions.
Our law firm is dedicated to achieving the best possible results for truck accident victims. Over the years, we have achieved a history of favorable settlements and jury verdicts for our clients.
There are many ways truck accidents in the mountains can occur:
- Mechanical failure: Higher elevations place stress on vehicles, so proper maintenance is critical before trucks enter the Rocky Mountains. The truth is that vehicles simply do not perform as well at 10,000 feet as they do at sea level. Trucks with faulty brakes, windshield wipers, defrosters and exhaust systems can cause mechanical failure related accidents.
- Speeding: Trucks should not go down a mountain any faster than they can go up it. Truckers should downshift to a lower gear when descending down a mountain.
- Following too closely: It takes longer to stop when going downhill. Unfortunately, truckers sometimes forget this and tailgate smaller vehicles in the mountains.
- Failing to yield to the right of way: Cars going uphill should always be given the right of way. Trucks that fail to yield can cause accidents. Truckers should also allow plenty of time for passing vehicles to make it back to their lane before proceeding.
- Hugging the center line: Mountain roads are much more narrow than interstate highways. Especially in large trucks, truckers may “hug” the center line, forcing cars and trucks in other lanes off the road.
- Failing to use proper caution in bad weather: Fog, rain, wind and snow make driving harder. But truck drivers who encounter bad weather conditions sometimes fail to exercise proper caution and drive negligently. They fail to slow down and look out for other vehicles — often causing serious accidents.
Driving in the mountains is more difficult and takes more energy than driving on flat land. Truckers often suffer from driver fatigue. Too tired to use proper caution when operating their vehicles, they put other drivers at risk on steep mountain roads.
Talk With a Lawyer About Your Accident Today
For a free consultation, contact the lawyers at Coppola & Melonakis. Our law firm handles truck accident cases on contingency, which means we do not collect attorney fees unless we recover compensation for you — either by negotiating a favorable settlement or winning at trial.