Truck Accidents

Kansas Truck Accident Lawyers

Tractor-trailer accidents in Kansas often result in serious injuries and fatalities. Due to their immense size and weight, large commercial trucks often cause massive destruction when they collide with smaller passenger vehicles. Whether you were involved in a collision caused by a speeding 18-wheeler on Interstate 70 in Topeka, or you lost a loved one in a crash caused by a truck driver who fell asleep at the wheel on I-35 near Wichita, you need an experienced attorney on your side, fighting for your rights. You need Bretz Injury Law.

Located in Hutchinson, Salina, Wichita, Garden City, Dodge City, Liberal, Hays, Topeka, Olathe, and Kansas City and serving truck accident victims throughout Kansas, Bretz Injury Law has a well-earned reputation for providing clients with the attentive and personalized service they deserve, as well as the aggressive advocacy they need. We have recovered more than $300 million in verdicts and settlements for our clients, including multiple six, seven, and eight-figure results.


Call our truck accident lawyers at 620.RESULTS to schedule a free initial consultation, or contact us online. There are no fees until we recover compensation for you.

Truck Accident Statistics in Kansas

Truck accidents are some of the most devastating. In Kansas, they account for a significant number of the annual traffic crashes. Here are some numbers related to Kansas truck accidents in 2021:

  • 3,316 crashes involved large or heavy trucks
  • 731 large trucks were involved in accidents
  • Of all truck-related crashes, 72 were fatal, claiming 81 lives
  • 694 truck crashes resulted in injuries, injuring 965 people

Truck accidents are a common cause of fatalities and injuries on Kansas roads, and these statistics back up that claim. Sadly, most of those affected in these accidents are the occupants of passenger vehicles.

To schedule a free initial consultation, call us at or contact us online. There are no fees unless/until we recover compensation for you.

What Makes Truck Accident Cases So Complex?

Truck accidents are generally more complicated than standard car accidents. In crashes involving large commercial vehicles, it is critical to examine whether regulations were followed. There may also be multiple layers of liability. The driver and their employer may be responsible. It is also possible that a third party, such as the company that loaded the trailer, may have been negligent.

Some of the many elements that make truck accident cases so complex include the following:

Circumstances of the Wreck

Unlike cars, trucks have huge blind spots, which puts passenger vehicles at risk when trucks are switching lanes or turning. Trucks also lack immediate stopping power, which makes crashes even more probable. In addition to their weight and size, these factors make trucks prone to unique accident types, such as jackknifes, under-ride accidents, and rollovers.

Extent of Injuries

Due to the huge impact of truck crashes, the other vehicle’s occupants tend to suffer severe or fatal injuries. Accidents involving large trucks almost always result in catastrophic injuries, especially for passenger vehicle occupants. While car accidents can potentially cause severe or fatal injuries, they are almost guaranteed in the event of a truck accident.

Financial Compensation

Damage and injuries in a truck accident are usually greater and more severe than in other accidents. It is also common for other involved parties to suffer fatal injuries, meaning truck accident cases often result in larger settlements than car accident cases.

Injuries in truck accidents require extensive treatment and may permanently affect victims. Besides the extensive financial costs of treatment, these accidents result in lost wages and earning capacity as victims are often permanently incapacitated.

Federal Trucking Regulations

The trucking industry is governed by slightly different regulations, which affect the investigation of truck accidents and the determination of liability. Trucking regulations outline the laws on various issues, from the allowable height and weight of trucks to the maximum hours a trucker can drive.

Determining Fault and Proving Negligence

Determining the party responsible in a commercial truck accident can be difficult. In truck accidents, various parties may be held liable for the accident, making the fault determination process more complex. Some of these parties may include truckers and truck repair facilities.

Trucks also have unique insurance considerations, which may affect truck accident claims. All these legal intricacies make truck accidents different, making it essential to work with truck accident lawyers that are experienced in personal injury cases.

If you or someone you love was involved in an accident with a semi-truck, delivery truck, big rig, tractor-trailer, or any other type of commercial vehicle, do not attempt to handle your accident claim on your own. These claims require the experienced and knowledgeable help of a truck wreck attorney who has the resources and skills to effectively build your case.

At Bretz Injury Law, our lawyers are prepared to build the strongest possible personal injury case on your behalf. We often work alongside accident reconstructionists, medical professionals, economists, and expert witnesses to identify how the crash occurred, the severity of our client’s injuries and damages, the nature of their economic and non-economic losses, and more. From there, we are able to effectively advocate for the maximum compensation from the liable party’s insurance company. If necessary, we are prepared to take your case to trial. Call Bretz Injury Law at 620.RESULTS for a free case evaluation.

What Are Some Types of Truck Accidents?

The weight and size of trucks make them susceptible to unique accident types, such as jackknife and under-ride accidents. Here are the types of accidents common with large trucks.

Head-On Collisions

These accidents happen when a driver cannot control their vehicle and drives into oncoming traffic, crashing into another vehicle head-first. Head-on collisions involving trucks can be deadly due to the truck’s weight and momentum.

Jackknife Accidents

A jackknife accident occurs when the driver of a large truck brakes suddenly, causing the trailer to skid and form a jackknife shape or 90-degree angle with the cab. In these accidents, other vehicles may be trapped between the truck and cab, sustaining severe damage. Due to the trailer’s weight, the other vehicle’s occupants can easily suffer fatal or severe injuries.

Read-End Collisions

Tailgating a large truck, especially on a freeway, could easily lead to a rear-end collision. If the truck brakes abruptly, you may not have enough time to react, causing you to drive into the rear end of the truck. Rear-end collisions are often catastrophic, especially if the tailing driver is speeding.

Truck Rollovers

18-wheelers can roll over if the driver swerves or takes a poorly maneuvered turn. Due to their weight, a sudden movement of the wheels can shift the trailer’s weight and affect its equilibrium, causing the truck to roll over. Truck rollovers are dangerous, especially when the trailer wrecks passenger vehicles, pedestrians, or motorcyclists.

Tire Blowout Accidents

Tire blowouts are hazardous occurrences that may occur due to various reasons, including worn-out tires and air pressure issues in the tires. These incidents can cause the truck to roll over, wrecking other vehicles. Tire debris also presents a hazard and may result in an accident, especially if it hits other smaller vehicles, such as a motorcycle.

Under-Ride Accidents

These accidents happen when motorists crash into a semi’s side or rear end and end up underneath the trailer. These situations are more common at night and can force a vehicle to travel underneath the big rig.

What Are the Top Causes of Truck Accidents?

Truck accidents can occur for various reasons, including extreme weather conditions and vehicle defects. However, most accidents occur due to driver error or the negligence of another party. Below are the common causes of truck accidents.

Inexperienced Truck Drivers

Driving a large truck is a big responsibility that requires special knowledge and skills. Drivers can operate big rigs only after passing knowledge and skill tests and obtaining a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Operating a large truck without the required skills and knowledge significantly increases the probability of an accident.


Given their weight and size, it is safe to say that driving a large truck at high speeds can have catastrophic results. These vehicles generate significant momentum while in motion, and speeding amplifies it. That puts other motorists at risk of an accident and increases the chances of a multiple-vehicle crash.

Overloaded Trucks

The weight of loaded semi-trucks is capped at 80,000 pounds by federal law — and for good reason. Besides damaging roads, overloaded trucks increase the risk of accidents. Specifically, an overloaded truck may be at a higher risk of rolling over and crashing into traffic due to inefficient braking.

Distracted Driving

Distractions such as eating, drinking, adjusting the radio, and using the phone while driving take the driver’s attention away from the road, increasing the risk of an accident. Distractions could also be in the form of mental activities that shift the driver’s attention from the road, such as conversing with a passenger.

Fatigued Truck Drivers

Truck drivers can clock up to 11 hours of continuous driving before getting a rest. Even experienced truckers can suffer the effects of fatigue if they exceed the allowable hours, putting themselves and other motorists at risk of accidents. Fatigue often causes drowsiness, which could easily lead to deadly crashes.

Improper Truck Maintenance

Unmaintained truck systems and parts, such as brakes and tires, may contribute to accidents. Scenarios such as tire blowouts or failed brakes make it challenging for truck drivers to control their vehicles, ultimately leading to crashes.

Who Is Liable in a Truck Accident?

Wrecks involving commercial vehicles cannot be handled the same way as a car accident due to factors such as complex federal regulations and insurance questions that are unique to commercial motor vehicles.

Commercial truck wrecks may also have many more liable parties than standard car accident claims. In addition to the driver of the commercial vehicle, the driver’s employer, the vehicle’s owner, the maintenance company, the shipper, and the parties who loaded the trailer may all be partially or wholly liable.

This area of law is very complex, and a person injured in a commercial vehicle wreck will need an attorney who is experienced in commercial carrier litigation. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a semi-truck or large truck accident, call Bretz Injury Law to schedule your free initial consultation. We look forward to assisting you in every way we can.

The Danger of Overloaded Tractor-Trailers

Strict weight limits exist for 18-wheelers and their trailers. In general, most fully loaded trucks weigh no more than 80,000 pounds. The limits are in place to keep the roads safe. Overloaded trucks are more difficult to control on highways and major thoroughfares. The driver may not be able to safely stop or turn the vehicle. Due to the added weight, overloaded commercial trucks are more prone to rolling over or experiencing tire blowouts.

In addition, the contents of overloaded 18-wheelers can shift, causing the truck to become unstable and tip over. Often, shifting cargo causes a driver to lose control, which can be disastrous for others on the road.

Trucking companies often deny overloading trucks. The driver and his or her employer may blame a separate company that loaded the trailer, or they may even argue that the truck did not actually exceed the maximum weight restrictions. There may be a lot of finger-pointing, but we can help you uncover the truth and determine liability for your damages.

How Dangerous Are Fatigued Truck Drivers?

The federal government has strict laws limiting the number of hours commercial truck drivers can operate a truck within a 24-hour period. These “hours-of-service rules” put forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration are designed to prevent accidents caused by overly fatigued drivers.

Unfortunately, some truck drivers ignore such rules and cause serious — sometimes even fatal — truck accidents while asleep at the wheel. These accidents are often especially severe because the truck does not slow down, or it may even accelerate, before crashing into another vehicle.

Some truck drivers personally decide to continue driving even when they know they should pull over and take a break. But in some cases, trucking companies force drivers to work longer hours and drive tired, putting everyone on the road at risk. Other times, truck companies actually create incentives for drivers to drive when tired by compensating them for the number of miles driven.

At Bretz Injury Law, we know the regulations. We know the law. Drivers are limited to 70 hours per week on the road. They must rest for at least 34 consecutive hours or get at least two nights’ sleep before returning to the road. If they cause a crash, we can examine logbooks, interview witnesses, and turn over every stone to determine which rules were broken.

What Makes Truck and Car Accidents Different?

Truck accidents are worse than car accidents due to trucks’ size and weight. The difference in these factors means that truck collisions involve greater force, meaning that fatalities in such crashes are almost always the occupants of passenger vehicles.

What To Do After a Truck Accident

Taking the right steps after a truck accident helps you protect your right to claim damages by avoiding common mistakes after an accident. If you have been involved in a truck accident, it is important that you do the following:

  • Call 911. Calling the police immediately will ensure that they provide their account on the police report, which will aid your claim process. You should also call emergency medical responders to help attend to those injured in the accident.
  • Seek medical attention. Despite the fact that you might feel fine following an accident, it is crucial to have a medical professional examine you to rule out internal bleeding, serious organ damage, or a head injury.
  • Document the scene of the accident. If you are able, take pictures of skid marks, vehicle damage, weather conditions, and other road conditions. This may come in handy when resolving the liability issue.
  • Record important information. Get as much information as possible at the scene. Note the other parties’ full names, contact information, home address, insurance company and policy number, license numbers, and the contact information of any witnesses. Ask the police working the accident for a report.
  • Call your insurance company. Once you have dealt with your pressing needs at the accident scene, notify your insurer that you have been involved in an accident. Failure to do so could put your coverage at risk.
  • Call Bretz Injury Law. Experienced truck accident lawyers will protect your legal rights after the accident and help assess your legal options.

In addition to these steps, it is important that you remain calm and avoid saying anything that could suggest you are at fault for the accident. Ultimately, following the right steps after a truck wreck will put you in a better position and boost your chances of obtaining fair compensation for your losses.

Why Contact Bretz Injury Law?

When you have an experienced lawyer at our law firm working with you, you can take an aggressive approach right from the start. When we accept a case, we do not waste time, immediately getting to work to build the strongest possible claim. Our lawyers are dedicated to using all available resources to pursue the maximum compensation you are owed.

At Bretz Injury Law, we treat our clients like equals. We are on the same team and are eager to fight for your rights. We truly care about you and your recovery, which is why we provide personalized and attentive legal services tailored to your unique needs. Our truck accident lawyers are here for you every step of the way, providing answers to your questions and addressing any concerns you may have.

For a free case review, contact us now at . You can meet us at our offices, or we can meet you wherever you are.

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