Can I seek financial compensation from a garbage truck accident in PA?

Garbage truck accidents occur much more frequently than one may think. If you were injured by one, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Continue reading and reach out to our skilled motor vehicle accident attorneys today to learn more.

What are the different types of garbage trucks?

Not only are garbage trucks large and heavy, but they are also made up of many moving parts and usually carry hazardous materials. There are several different kinds of garbage trucks that vary in size, weight capacity, equipment, and function. Even at low speeds, a garbage truck could fatally injure a person. There are four main types of garbage trucks that are used to collect trash across the United States, including the following:

  • Front-loader trucks: This kind of truck has a hydraulically controlled forklift on the front of the vehicle that lifts and dumps the contents of the dumpster into the hopper. It is then compacted into the rear of the truck
  • Rear-loader trucks: This type of truck has a big space at the rear of the truck. The garbage collector can hang off the back of the truck to easily jump off to gather, refuse, and empty the contents of receptacles into the back
  • Side-loader trucks: This type of truck can be loaded either manually or with the use of an automatic robotic arm. The robotic arm picks up trash from the side of the vehicle and empties the contents into the truck
  • Roll-off garbage trucks: This kind of truck carries a roll-off container, which can be dropped off, loaded, and then picked up to empty the contents at a landfill or recycling center. Roll-off garbage trucks are mainly used for large-scale commercial waste removals including construction and demolition sites.

How do garbage truck accidents occur?

There are a number of different ways that garbage truck accidents can happen. The drivers operating heavy machinery are often within close proximity to other vehicles and pedestrians. Because of the truck’s large size, it may have several blind spots that could impede the driver’s view. This may result in colliding with another vehicle, cyclist, or pedestrian. This can be particularly dangerous when handling the truck on narrow and densely occupied streets.

Even though speed may not be involved, garbage trucks can still cause horrible and even fatal injuries. Common causes of garbage truck accidents may include the following:

  • Driving while speeding
  • Dumping waste that hits another vehicle or person
  • Distracted driving
  • Driving while fatigued
  • Falling objects from the truck
  • Failure to check blind spots
  • Driving in the wrong lane
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Failure to follow traffic rules or signals
  • Failure to yield the right-of-way
  • Inadequate vehicle maintenance
  • Hazardous waste spill
  • Rear-end collision
  • Lack of training


Friedman Schuman is an experienced and dedicated legal resource for clients throughout Pennsylvania. Contact Friedman Schuman today to schedule a consultation.

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