There are thousands more vehicles on the road today than there were even just two decades ago. With the increase inevitably comes a larger presence of transport trucks on the road. These are not only regular sized trucks but also tandem trailers carrying two or more truckloads at a time.
The presence of such large vehicles on the road can be a hazard for every driver. Even with increased regulations limiting speeds and vehicle weights, the number of accidents has not significantly decreased.
Trucks can weigh up to 50,000 pounds and need to be respected on the road or you could end up needing the counsel of a truck accident attorney, that is if you were to survive a crash with a semi.
We are going to take a look at some stark and sometimes startling facts about truck accidents in the hopes that it will increase the caution in which you take when driving on the busy highways that can be full of big trucks.
- There has been a 40% increase in large truck or bus accidents between 2009 and 2017. Truck safety violations are the most common cause of truck accidents. This can include situations including tire or brake failure. The other most common cause is driver error caused by exhaustion. The pressure to extend legal driving hours to get loads delivered quicker is a big problem in the industry.
- There were over 116,000 truck accidents that resulted in personal injury to either the driver of the truck or the driver and occupants of another vehicle. The injuries from a collision between a truck and car accidents can be devastating. Head injuries or monumental physical injuries are often the result of colliding with such a large and powerful vehicle.
- 78% of all fatal truck accidents occur during regular business hours (6am to 6pm) when the roads are the busiest. Although you may see lots of trucks on the roads in the evening or overnight, there is still much less traffic in general keeping after hours accidents at a lower rate.
- A significant number of fatal truck accidents can be traced back to a lack of log book and inspection safety. More drivers are either ignoring safety inspections altogether or rushing through the process and missing important details. Once a driver gets on the road, it’s too late to take care of issues that could save lives. Once again, this lack of responsibility on the part of the drivers can be attributed to packed schedules and unrealistic deadlines.
- Various issues with truck tires can account for nearly 15% of all fatal truck crashes. Companies looking to cut corners will often send their trucks out on the road with worn, unbalanced or mismatched tires. A decision that can be deadly for their drivers and other cars on the road.
Stay Aware & Stay Safe
It’s impossible to avoid all trucks on the road. Awareness as a driver is one of the best ways to keep you safe. Trucks travelling at speeds topping 70mph with thousands of pounds of load behind them can be deadly. Leave enough space, be aware of all the trucks and traffic around you, follow the general rules of the road with respect and you can avoid a deadly crash with a truck.
Sources: https://accidentvalues.com/info/truck-accidents/10-truck-accident-facts/, https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/safety/data-and-statistics/large-truck-and-bus-crash-facts-2017, https://www.victimslawyer.com/commercial-vehicle-and-trucking-accidents-faqs.html