Why didn’t that 18-wheeler stop in time to avoid a crash?

Some vehicle crashes come as a total surprise. Others appear to play out in slow motion. Seeing an 18-wheeler bearing down on you is something you will remember for the rest of your life. If the driver could not stop those 18 wheels turning in time, you are probably facing massive medical bills and long-term life consequences.

Praying hard for the truck to stop clearly did not work, but why not? What was wrong with the vehicle or driver that prevented it from stopping in time? Here are a few possibilities:

Brake problems

Brakes can occasionally fail due to a product or materials issue. Yet it is more likely they failed to stop the vehicle in time because they lacked maintenance


Drivers need to take care to slow their speed for the conditions and be wary in areas where ice traditionally holds on cold mornings or if they see evidence of flooding or spillage. If they slam the brakes on and the surface is wet or oily, they will not stop as quickly as on a dry surface. The wheels may even lock and cause the vehicle to slide forward.


Modern 18-wheeler cabs carry several electronic devices which, combined with the driver’s phone, can distract the driver if they use them when moving. Other reasons a driver might not see you include fatigue, daydreaming or drug or alcohol use.

18-wheeler crashes are rarely accidents. They are the result of someone’s error. Getting help to determine why an 18-wheeler did not stop in time will be crucial to claiming the extensive amount of compensation you will probably need if hit by one.