Atlanta, GA- In 2011, there were approximately 1.25 million registered commercial vehicles and the trucking industry is poised to grow. During the same year the trucking industry earned closed to $300 billion and that figure is projected to almost double by 2015, which means that the number of trucks on the road will also increase significantly. This growth is good for truckers and the economy, but for motorists this is daunting prospect since accidents involving tractor-trailer are more deadly than car collisions.
According to information from the American Truck Association, 2009 accident data showed that 1 percent of track accidents resulted in fatalities. That is double the number of fatal passenger car collisions. Fatal car collision data from the same year showed that 0.5 percent of car collisions resulted in a fatality.
Tractor-trailer accidents are so deadly because of the sheer size and weight pf commercial vehicles. The average tractor-trailer can weigh up to 100,000 pounds. With tractor-trailer accidents, 98 percent of fatalities occur to the individuals driving passenger vehicles. It’s just a simple matter of physics, the bigger and heavier the object, the greater the impact it has on smaller, lighter objects. On this site you can read a number of articles in which motorists suffer serious injuries while the truck driver often walks away from the accident with no injury.
That isn’t to say truckers never get hurt or die, but they have the protection of much larger vehicle so they tend to suffer less harm than other motorists. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that 15 percent of truck accidents result in fatalities for the truck driver.
We need tractor-trailers and truck drivers; they deliver goods to stores that we need. They deliver supplies to manufacturers. The list of reasons we need the trucking industry goes on and on. The U.S. economy would crumble without commercial trucks and truckers. The large majority of truckers are safe drivers, but it takes the negligent actions of just one trucker to paint all drivers in a negative light.
While we need commercial trucks and truckers, we also need the trucks to be well-maintained and the truckers to have superior safety training and take measures that will prevent dangerous situations.
The causes of truck accidents vary. Drowsiness, intoxication, inattention and distraction are large contributors. It is difficult to combat all of these problems; the federal government recently passed new regulations that will curtail the incidents of drowsy driving by cutting the number of consecutive hours a driver is allowed to drive in a day, and requiring they have adequate rest periods.
This small measure has met with resistance from long-haul truckers, but safety advocates believe the new regulations will help cut down a fraction of the deadly collisions involving commercial vehicles.
When you have been involved in a truck accident caused by the negligent actions of the driver, a truck accident attorney can assure that you receive compensation for your injuries or the death of a loved one.