Am I at fault for Being in the Blind Spot of a Tractor Trailer? New Mexico Big Rig Lawyer Discusses
New Mexico Big Rig Collision Caused by a Blind Spot: Is the Passenger Vehicle at Fault for Being in the Blind Spot of a Tractor Trailer?
Commercial vehicles like big rigs, 18 wheelers, semi tractors, tractor trailers, box trucks, tankers, double trailers, and other trucks are very large vehicles. These trucks dwarf all other vehicles on the roadways and interstates like I-40, I-25, and I-10. By virtue of their size, they also naturally have more blind spots where it is more difficult for another vehicle on the roadway to be seen. This makes it more dangerous for other people on the roadway because not all truck drivers will guard against their blind spots.
When a truck driver makes a turn, lane change, or other maneuver without properly checking his or her blind spot, the truck driver may immediately blame the other vehicle for “hiding” in the blind spot. In fact, it may even sound logical as must driver’s education and defensive driving courses teach motorists to make themselves visible. The trucking company many even complain that you were not visible and did nothing to avoid the collision. The insurance carrier for the trucking company may also threaten you and deny your claim or disclaim coverage, again blaming you.
This is typical trucking accident litigation and puffery. As a victim of a New Mexico big rig collision caused by a truck failing to negotiate its blind spot, you are likely not going to be barred from recovery or the cause of the action. The truck drivers, trucking company, and insurance company or companies want you to believe that to go away. But as an experienced New Mexico big rig lawyer, and one with experience in insurance defense, we know at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. that victims in blind spot crashes may be entitled to compensation for their injuries.
Blind Spot Trucking Accidents: What is Liability?
Under New Mexico law, all motorists owe others on or near the roadway a duty of care. This duty of care includes exercising reasonable care under the circumstances while operating a motor vehicle. This further includes “seeing what there is to be seen.” This means that if a vehicle is in the path of travel, a driver crossing or entering into that right-of-way must see that victim which is there to be seen. This means “I didn’t see you” is not an acceptable defense.
In addition, New Mexico statutory law prohibits certain actions by motorists. This includes NM Stat. 66-7-325 which requires turns to be done “with reasonable safety.” Particularly left turns under NM Stat. 66-7-329, which requires the turning vehicle to yield to the right-of-way to all other vehicles.
There this is most likely to become an issue is lane changes. Any lane changes, such as on I-40, I-25, or I-10, must be done pursuant to NM Stat. 66-7-317, which requires all vehicles to “not be moved from such lane until the driver has first ascertained that such movement can be made with safety.” If a truck driver makes a lane change when a vehicle is in its blind spot, and the lane change causes a New Mexico big rig collision, the truck driver may be liable for the collision.
Truck Drivers Claiming a Vehicle Was in the Blind Spot is Practically Admitting Fault! Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. to Learn Your Rights
When a truck driver admits that a vehicle was in his or her blind spot which caused a New Mexico big rig collision, it is likely that a violation of the New Mexico common law (judge-made law) or New Mexico statutory law (legislatively-made law), which was noted above, is violated. If this happened to you, call our New Mexico big rig collision lawyer at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. to learn what your rights to compensation may be by dialing (505) 883-5000. You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.