Large trucks pose a unique danger on the roads since their build and design can lead to underride accidents. If you have never considered these before, take a moment to do so, as they’re one of the most dangerous types of accidents anyone can ever be involved in.
Essentially, the issue is height. A semi is so tall that a small car — think a convertible or a coupe — may barely reach the bottom edge of the trailer. In fact, there have been action movies where cars drive under these trucks intentionally. That’s a bit far-fetched, of course, but it shows how significant the size difference is.
When a car strikes the side of that trailer, it may fit between the wheels and under the trailer. That’s an underride accident. It doesn’t fit entirely, though, as the truck sheers off the top of the car. This can naturally cause severe injuries for those who are inside, and many of the car’s safety systems, such as the crumple zones in the front, are negated.
A similar accident can happen when a truck backs over a car or when a second vehicle strikes the first from behind and pushes the first car under a truck. This can happen in a traffic jam, for instance, when a small car stops behind a semi and then gets hit from behind by another semi.
Some trucks do have safety systems, such as bars or panels to prevent the cars from going all the way under, but nothing is perfect. Those who suffer catastrophic injuries in these crashes definitely want to know what legal steps they can take.