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Summer Driving and Gas Tips

Recognizing the Many Types of Vehicles on Washington’s Roads

Posted by Russell West | Jun 30, 2022 | 0 Comments

The Washington State police recently identified a teenager who passed away from injuries he received in a car accident that happened a few miles northwest of Spokane. The teenager was driving a Volkswagen Jetta when he attempted to pass a school bus on Nine Mile Road on a curved section of road that had double yellow (or “no pass”) line. The driver then lost control of his vehicle and the vehicle went off the road. The teenager's vehicle then rolled and came to a stop upside down. The teenager was wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident. Neither alcohol nor drugs are believed to have played a role in the crash. The teenager is reported to be the only person in the Jetta when the crash happened. 

It is easy to stereotype all big trucks on the road as “big rigs” with grizzled drivers behind the wheel. While it is true that some of the trucks out there match this description, not all do. Large trucks perform the role of delivering goods to consumers and manufacturers. Tractor-trailers, however, are just one of the several types of bigger vehicles that motorists encounter on Washington's roads. The Federal Highway Administration has established categories for non-private passenger vehicles based on a vehicle's class and weight. The following are some of the most common larger vehicles that drivers encounter on Washington's roads.

School Buses

School buses are yet another unique type of vehicle that motorists encounter while on the road. While most school bus drivers are experienced professionals, these vehicles are sometimes involved in accidents. When school bus crashes happen, they routinely result in serious injuries. Two of the unique factors to consider when it comes to school bus crashes is that these vehicles almost always lack seat belts, which means that if the driver brakes suddenly or ends up in a collision, children are at risk of being thrown around from the force. School buses also have a high center of gravity, which greatly increases the chance that they will roll over upon impact. 

Cattle Carriers

Cattle carriers are trailer-sized cages mounted to a chassis. When truckers connect a cattle carrier to its tractor, accidents sometimes happen. These vehicles carry an immense amount of weight, and that weight can shift during transit. These vehicles must be operated with extreme caution and skill in order to reach their destination safely. 


Shipping companies utilize flatbeds to transport a variety of products including logs, construction material, vehicles, and other heavy industrial materials. The materials mounted on flatbeds must be properly secured, and shifting weight can play a role in crashes involving these vehicles.


Tankers are either self-contained or created to work in combination with tractor trailers. Manufacturers create tankers to transport gas, fuel, chemicals, or other hazardous materials. Explosions can result from tanker crashes.

Dump Trucks

Dump trucks as well as cement mixers, refrigerated trucks, and other types of service equipment are a common sight in Washington. These vehicles often weigh a substantial amount, and many times this weight plays a unique role in crashes and resulting damages.

Garbage and Recycling Trucks

These vehicles travel through both commercial and residential areas providing waste removal services. These vehicles often move more slowly than the surrounding traffic and make routine stops.

Contact an Experienced Accident Attorney Today

Wherever motorists go in Washington, they are likely to encounter an array of bigger vehicles. It is unfortunately impossible to avoid these trucks. Motorists should make sure to take the size and weight of these vehicles into consideration, even when it comes to small issues like passing a vehicle. If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck crash, you should not hesitate to speak with an experienced attorney. Contact West Law Office today to schedule a free case evaluation. 

About the Author

Russell West

Russell West from West Law Office, located in Spokane, Washington represents clients in areas of criminal traffic, misdemeanors, and personal injury. DUI’s, Reckless Driving, Negligent driving, Hit and Run, and Driving with Suspended license are the majority of criminal traffic violations. Drug Charges, Theft, and Domestic Violence account for most of the other criminal cases Russell handles.


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West Law Office - Russell West Attorney

Spokane Attorney Russell West practice areas include: Auto Accidents, Personal Injury, Motorcycle Accidents, Slip and Falls, DUIs, DOL Hearings, Criminal Traffic, Expungement/Vacating Records, and Insurance Bad Faith

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