What Are Underride Truck Accidents?

Underride truck accidents are among the scariest—and most dangerous—accidents you can experience as a driver or passenger. As the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) explains, an underride truck accident is any crash, “in which any portion of a passenger vehicle slides under the body of a larger truck or trailer.” These accidents often result in severe injuries; and, tragically, they are often fatal.

In Arkansas, we have more than our fair share of tractor-trailers and other large commercial trucks. Unfortunately, this also means that we have more than our fair share of commercial truck accidents. This includes accidents involving underrides. If you have been severely injured or a loved one has tragically lost their life in an underride truck accident in Arkansas, we encourage you to speak with one of our lawyers about your legal rights as soon as possible.

3 Common Types of Underride Truck Accidents in Arkansas

While all underride truck accidents involve a passenger vehicle sliding under the body of a large commercial truck or trailer, these accidents can happen in a few different ways. Typically, an underride truck accident will involve one of the following three scenarios:

1. A Passenger Vehicle Collides with the Rear of an 18-Wheeler

Many underride truck accidents occur when a passenger vehicle collides with the rear of a large commercial truck. Tractor trailers’ and other large commercial trucks’ rear bumpers are higher than the hoods of many passenger vehicles; and, as a result, passenger vehicles will often slide under the truck’s rear bumpers in the event of a rear-end collision.

While a truck’s rear tires will usually stop a passenger vehicle in this scenario, the rear tires are far enough forward that the passenger vehicle’s windshield will hit the rear bumper. This can collapse the passenger vehicle’s cabin—potentially causing serious or fatal trauma to those inside.

2. A Passenger Vehicle and an 18-Wheeler Collide Side-to-Side

Underride truck accidents can also happen when a passenger vehicle runs into the side of a large commercial truck. The sides of tractor-trailers and other large commercial trucks are even higher off of the ground than their rear bumpers, and this means that even taller passenger vehicles can be at risk for under-riding in this scenario.

A similar situation involves a large commercial truck changing lanes or attempting to turn when a passenger vehicle is directly by its side. While passenger vehicles in this position will often be in the truck driver’s blind spot, this is not an excuse for causing a life-altering or life-threatening accident.

3. A Passenger Vehicle Passes Completely Under an 18-Wheeler

In some cases, a passenger vehicle that underrides a large commercial truck can pass completely under the truck and come out of the other side. These accidents present extreme risks, as not only can the passenger vehicle’s cabin be sheared off during the underride, but it can potentially be hit by another vehicle after passing under the truck.

Tragically, these accidents have a high fatality rate; and, even when drivers and passengers survive, their lives often are never the same. In light of these high costs, it is important that victims and their families do what they can to assert their legal rights and hold the trucking company (or other at-fault party) accountable.

Filing a Lawsuit After an Underride Truck Accident in Arkansas

Victims and grieving families will be entitled to compensation for underride truck accidents in many cases. Truck driver negligence, inadequate truck maintenance, and other truck-related issues are among the leading causes of these accidents, and these are all issues for which trucking companies and other entities can—and should—be held accountable.

Seeking compensation after an underride truck accident in Arkansas starts with engaging a law firm to conduct a thorough investigation. When you engage our law firm, we will investigate your (or your loved one’s) accident immediately. We will work diligently to gather all of the evidence we need to prove your legal rights, and then we will use our experience to fight for just compensation on your behalf.

Speak with a Lawyer About an Underride Truck Accident in Arkansas for FREE

If you need to know more about filing a lawsuit for an underride truck accident in Arkansas, we encourage you to contact us promptly. The experienced attorneys at Oliver Law Firm have extensive experience handling 18-wheeler accident cases. We aren’t intimidated by big trucking companies or their insurance companies. We are committed to fighting for the maximum compensation to which you are entitled under the law.

See Our Results 

Don’t face your injuries alone. To speak with a lawyer as soon as possible, contact Oliver Law Firm online or at 479-202-5200 for a FREE case evaluation. We help clients across Arkansas and throughout the United States from our office in Rogers, AR.