Larger trucks that the public can rent short-term for personal or commercial use can be convenient. These rentals are often box trucks such as U-Hauls, giving consumers in Texas and elsewhere a cost-effective alternative to hiring a moving company or paying someone to haul garbage to the landfill. While the box truck rental industry provides a valuable service, it may also be dangerous to the customers who are driving them or for those sharing the roads.
Last May in San Antonio, a U-Haul truck and a passenger shuttle were in a serious accident. SBG San Antonio reported that the U-Haul veered into traffic and struck the other vehicle. Two people received critical injuries and five others were hospitalized. Authorities did not cite any potential causes for the accident.
There are many ways a situation like this could have gone wrong. Perhaps one of the top factors in U-Haul crashes is the fact that most drivers who rent box trucks are not accustomed to driving such a large and unwieldy vehicle. It can be easy to lose control while driving at higher speeds or turning. It may be more difficult to see smaller obstacles, such as pedestrians, motorcycles and bicycles. Drivers may not realize it takes more time for a truck to brake. They might not know the height restrictions of their rental vehicle and smash the top of the truck while driving it beneath a low bridge or overpass. Weather and road conditions, such as wet or icy roads, high winds and potholes, can also cause a truck driver to lose control.
It may be necessary to seek legal advice after an accident involving a rental truck, since determining liability can be complicated.