What Kinds of Hazards Do Garbage Trucks Present on California Streets?

Garbage pick-up is a necessary service for all neighborhoods in all cities. Unfortunately, garbage trucks also present hazards to those sharing roadways with them, and they can create a dangerous situation for other motorists. 

If garbage trucks do not move across residential neighborhoods carefully, they may cause accidents with other motor vehicles or pose a threat to pedestrians. If you have been injured in an accident involving the neglectful actions of a garbage truck, speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer for an assessment of your claim. 

Reasons Why Garbage Trucks May Create Road Hazards 

Garbage trucks may present hazards on the roads for many reasons. Drivers have increased challenges of practicing safe driving habits, which may negatively impact pedestrians or those in smaller motor vehicles. The reasons why garbage trucks may create road hazards include: 

Garbage Trucks Stop Frequently 

Garbage trucks move through many neighborhoods and continuously stop. This means that when a California neighborhood has a city trash pick-up service, and some have additional pick-up services, it can make it impossible to predict when a truck will stop and pick up trash at a particular house. This can affect other motorists on the roadway who may not know the schedule and may not anticipate a trash truck’s immediate halt. Not knowing what a trash truck will do next can lead to rear-end collisions or other serious accidents. 

Garbage Truck Drivers Have an Increased Risk of Distracted Driving Behaviors 

Garbage truck drivers spend more time on the road than the average motorist because their eight-hour shift is spent collecting trash. Sometimes unpredictable circumstances may make drivers extend their hours on the road. The more time the driver spends on the road, the more likely they will practice distracted driving behaviors. These behaviors may include: 

  • Checking their phone 
  • Conversing with other workers 
  • Eating and drinking while driving 

Distracted driving in residential neighborhoods, where garbage truck drivers spend most of their time, is especially dangerous because of the narrow street size. It may lead to overlooking smaller motor vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists. Children playing in these neighborhoods are also at risk if a driver is not adequately paying attention to the road. 

Garbage Trucks May Have Unpredictable Loads 

Most large trucks make an effort to have balanced loads to help them maneuver more easily on roadways and prevent the loads from falling off. Garbage trucks may not have that option because trash pick-up is not always predictable. Loads of varying sizes throughout the day can quickly throw off the truck’s balance. This can cause a few potential risks: 

  • Unbalanced loads can increase potential accidents 
  • Garbage truck debris can fall into the road 

Unbalanced loads can increase the chances of a garbage truck rollover and can make it harder to control the vehicle safely on the road. More commonly, debris falling on the road may cause accidents and road hazards for other motorists. 

Garbage Trucks Have Large Blind Spots 

Most large trucks have blind spots where the driver cannot see behind them or around them. It mostly impacts the vehicle’s visibility in the front, sides, and rear. When other vehicles hover in these blind spots, it can cause accidents when the other motorists attempt to move in front of the garbage truck unsafely. 

Garbage Truck Shifts Increase Risk of Fatigued Driving 

Garbage truck drivers start their shifts early, usually around five or six in the morning. This can increase driver fatigue because they are not yet alert and awake. They may also face challenges as other motorists rush to get to work, and the darkness may increase the lack of visibility. 

Causes of Truck Driving Accidents in California 

Other conditions can impact garbage truck accidents on the roadways of California. Some are due to the truck driving company and other various factors that can negatively affect other motorists’ safety. 

The following are additional potential causes of accidents involving a garbage truck: 

  • Poor maintenance of garbage truck 
  • Inadequate training and experience 
  • Poor road conditions for truck drivers 

If you suspect that an accident was caused due to the negligence of a garbage truck company, you may be able to recoup compensation for your injuries. Speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer and learn more about your legal rights for compensation. 

Speak with a California Personal Injury Lawyer at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. 

If you have been injured in an accident due to the negligence of a garbage truck driver or company, speak with an experienced lawyer at Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. Your accident may have caused you to endure mounting expenses, from medical bills to rehabilitation expenses, lost wages, and property damage. If you face financial challenges due to someone else’s negligence, Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. will fight for the justice you deserve. 

Eric Ratinoff Law Corp. has over 25 years of experience helping clients recoup compensation due to personal injuries. Attorney Eric Ratinoff offers outstanding legal representation for those injured due to someone else’s neglectful or careless behavior. Call (916) 970-9100 or fill out our contact form for a free consultation.