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Underride / Override Accidents

Underride and override accidents are some of the most devastating types of truck accidents, often resulting in fatal injuries for occupants of smaller passenger vehicles. And those who do survive often suffer permanent, life-altering injuries.

What are underride and override accidents?

When a vehicle is somehow forced underneath the trailer of an 18-wheeler or tractor-trailer, we refer to it as an underride or an override accident.

Why does this happen? The front end of most passenger cars is roughly 30 inches above the ground at its highest point. The bottom of a trailer is often 45 inches above the ground or more. This 15-inch height difference makes it easy for a passenger vehicle to pass under a truck.

Basically, an underride accident occurs when a passenger vehicle slides underneath a truck; an override is when a large truck runs over a smaller vehicle.


Underride Truck Accidents

An underride accident occurs when a vehicle becomes trapped beneath a tractor-trailer from either the sides or the rear of the truck. These accidents are often deadly for those in smaller vehicles because the point of impact happens right at head level. Despite having airbags or other safety equipment, passengers often suffer severe head trauma, spinal cord injuries, paralysis and even decapitation.

Underride accidents can happen when:

  • A driver brakes too suddenly or abruptly
  • The truck does not have working brake lights
  • The truck driver cuts off a smaller vehicle or backs up without signaling
  • The truck is not equipped with underride guards

Override Truck Accidents

An override accident occurs when a smaller vehicle is run over by a large commercial truck, typically shearing off the top of the car. Sometimes the smaller vehicle can be dragged by the larger truck before stopping, which can expose passengers of all vehicles involved to additional hazards such as fire, fuel spillage or hazardous loads.

Override accidents are often attributed to the truck driver’s inattention; however, these accidents can be caused by:

  • Faulty brakes or brake failure
  • Driving while tired or driving too many hours
  • Tire blowout
  • Improperly maintained truck
  • Reckless or erratic driving, such as abruptly changing lanes, speeding
  • Tailgating, such as a tractor-trailer following too closely behind the vehicle in front of it
  • Poor road or bad weather conditions

Experience Handling Devastating Truck Accidents

The most important stage in any accident is the initial research and investigation. The experienced truck accident attorneys at Nash & Franciskato handle this for you by gathering the evidence needed to show how your accident occurred. This includes analyzing:

Our goal is to help you and your family put your lives back together by obtaining the compensation you deserve, especially if the consequences involve a wrongful death.


Receive a Free Evaluation from Experienced Truck Accident Attorneys

In the Kansas City area and across Missouri, when you have been seriously injured in an underride or override accident, you need a trusted and experienced resource who will fight for your rights. Contact the truck accident attorneys at Nash & Franciskato for a free, no-obligation evaluation of your case.

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