As South Carolina highly-rated truck accident attorneys with decades of combined experience handling truck accident injury cases, our award-winning lawyers have compiled a list of the ten most common causes of trucking accidents throughout the state. Our mission is to get our clients the justice and fair compensation they deserve following an unexpected accident. If you have any questions about the content covered in this article, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

If you or a loved one was injured as a result of an accident involving a tractor-trailer or 18-wheeler, reach out to our team today. We are currently accepting new clients and have the experience and resources needed to aggressively defend you and your case. For a free case evaluation, call our office at (803) 888-2200, email, or complete our secure online form.

Ten Common Causes of SC Truck Accidents

1. Driver Fatigue

Truck driver fatigue is a leading factor in truck accidents in South Carolina and beyond. In fact, driver fatigue contributes to roughly 13% of all trucking accidents. Truck driver fatigue may result from:

  • Failure to follow federal hours of service regulations
  • Sleep disorders
  • Lack of quality sleep
  • Sedentary driver lifestyle 
  • And more

While federal regulations are put in place to protect truck drivers and those who share the road, failure to follow these regulations can cause fatigue and serious accidents.

2. Distracted Driving

Distractions, both inside and outside of the truck, can cause truck accidents. One study showed that 71% of large-truck crashes occurred when the driver was doing something besides driving the truck. Distractions can include texting, using cell phones, using dispatch devices, eating, reading, looking outside at things other than the road, and more. 

3. Speeding

Speeding amongst commuter and commercial vehicles continues to be a major issue on SC roads and remains a top contributor in fatal accidents. 

4. Unsafe Lane Changes

Unsafe lane changes or drifting out of the lane are major causes of truck accidents, especially on highways. 

Charleston truck accidents commonly occur on I-26, the main route connecting Charleston to the rest of the state and country. These accidents also commonly occur on I-95, Highway 17, and I-526. No matter where the accident occurred, it is in your best interest to contact a reputable Charleston truck accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Truck accidents in Columbia commonly occur on US-378, a hazardous route that extends from Columbia to the coast. They commonly also occur on I-20, I-26, I-77, and more. Our award-winning truck accident lawyers in Columbia, SC are here to get you the justice and compensation you deserve following a trucking accident, no matter where the accident happened. 

If you or a loved one has been injured or lost their life in a collision involving a truck or tractor-trailer anywhere in South Carolina, our lawyers are here to compassionately protect your rights and get you justice for what you’ve been forced to go through.

Sign on I-26 reading to stay straight to North Charleston/Columbia and exit right for Mt Pleasant/Georgetown

5. Improper Cargo Loading

Cargo loading is a critical part of goods transportation and must be done properly to limit the risk of accidents. When cargo is not loaded properly, cargo shifts can cause the truck to become imbalanced and lead to serious accidents. It also poses the risk of cargo falling out of a truck, striking vehicles around it or creating dangerous hazards in the road.

Cavanaugh & Thickens, LLC | South Carolina Truck Accident Lawyers Case Results

6. Equipment Failure

Brake defects are a common equipment failure that can lead to serious accidents involving tractor-trailers. In fact, brake defects were found in 56% of tractor-trailer collisions. In 2016, tire issues were recorded in 5.1% of fatal large truck accidents. Steering equipment defects are also not uncommon and can cause serious semi crashes. 

7. Inexperienced Drivers

A 2018 report showed that truck drivers with less than 5 years of experience operating big rigs are 41% more likely to cause a truck accident than a more experienced driver. 

Due to driver shortages, many companies have begun to hire less experienced drivers, which can cause accidents even with new driver training.

8. Aggressive Driving

Truck drivers are a critical part of the South Carolina economy, and are often under strict timeliness and delivery dates. As a result, truck drivers may engage in more aggressive driving tactics, such as speeding, cutting off other drivers, tailgating, and more. These can seriously increase the odds of truck accidents on SC roadways.

9. Poor Weather/Road Conditions

Due to their large size –  some over 69,500 pounds – the size of big rig vehicles is astronomical compared to that of a regular car. Pair that size with a truck’s slower ability to stop and slick roads or  other weather conditions, and the results can be extremely dangerous, even deadly.

10. Driving Under the Influence

Impaired truck driving is also, sadly, not uncommon. Truck drivers may turn to drugs or alcohol while on the clock, posing significant risk of serious accidents that can result in catastrophic injury and even loss of life. 

Your South Carolina Truck Accident Law Firm

Our personal injury attorneys dedicate a large portion of their caseload to specifically handling truck accident cases throughout the state. This is critical in these cases, as trucking lawyers must be extremely familiar with the specific rules and regulations that govern the trucking industry. Our lawyers actually have experience on both sides of trucking accident cases, providing a large benefit to our clients by allowing us to fully optimize your case and secure you the maximum compensation under SC law.

With offices in Columbia and Charleston, our truck accident injury lawyers handle truck accident cases throughout the state, including but not limited to:

  • Orangeburg 
  • Johns Island
  • Rock Hill 
  • Goose Creek
  • Greer
  • Spartanburg
  • Summerville

For a free case evaluation, contact our team today by calling (803) 888-2200 or completing our quick and easy contact form and a member of our team will be in touch shortly.