This is a subject matter that still escapes the understanding of some people. Why would there need to be a distinction between the two if the two are still vehicles on the road and cause an accident? In some respects, the questioning is valid since (when you think about it simplistically and without all the details), a truck is still just another vehicle – much like any other car. Unfortunately, the truth of life resists simplicity.
Looking at an eighteen wheeler truck, it is easy to distinguish that it simply has greater magnitude than that of a car. If a vehicle, on average, can weigh only around 5,000 pounds (for a large vehicle), an eighteen wheeler truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds without a permit. And even then, some trucks even carry dangerous or potentially extremely flammable material and so if they were ever to get in an accident, the consequences would likely be exponentially higher than that of a car accident.
According to the website of the lawyers with Williams Kherkher, this is why there are federal laws that aim to protect everyone on the road from potential truck accidents. For example, a truck driver is only allowed to drive for 14 hours on the road because it is almost as dangerous for a driver to be fatigued behind the wheel as if they were drunk. A truck driver must also be professionally trained and experienced in handling such a large vehicle because the proportions and dimensions are simply incomparable to that of an ordinary consumer vehicle.
The potential for devastation between the two is what makes the difference between a truck accident from a car accident.