A total of 4,102 people died in large truck crashes in 2017. Seventeen percent of these deaths were truck occupants, 68 percent were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles, and 14 percent were pedestrians, bicyclists or motorcyclists. Federal laws are in place to protect passengers from illegal truck activities that would make roadways more dangerous, including loads and sizes above legal limits for safe maneuverability in traffic situations.
Oregon heavy weight on trucks.
Through statute, administrative code, and enforcement policy, Oregon has given exemptions to various types of vehicles and commodities to operate above standard Federal truck size and weight limits. Oregon has a grandfather provision under Federal law 23 CFR Part 658, Appendix C, to allow vehicles to operate up to 105,500 lbs. which is 25,500 more lbs. than the general maximum amount allowed. Compare those weights to a 4,000 pound car that is not 75 feet long and visualize the discrepancy that will most certainly cause catastrophic damages when a weight load of that nature impacts such a smaller vehicle by comparison. Heavy truck travel has increased nationally on highways and roadways but the infrastructure has not kept stride resulting in shared congested travel for passenger vehicles and more multi-vehicle crashes with big rigs
The gross weight of vehicles operating without a special permit is governed by State tire weight limits, axle weight limits, and weight table (Or. Rev. Stat. §818.010) and is 20,000 lbs. for a single axle, 34,000 lbs. for a tandem axle, per state weight table for a tridem axle and gross weight of 80,000 lbs. or 600 lbs. per inch of tire width/10,000 lbs. per wheel.
Other reasons for trucks to crash include:
- Swinging turns
- Inability to brake
- Tire blowouts
- Inadequate driver training
- Overloaded cargo
- Weather and road conditions
- Other drivers.
What actions do I take if I am involved in a truck accident in Oregon?
If you are in an accident in Oregon, you should:
- Check on the condition of the people involved in the accident;
- Call the police or emergency responders if needed;
- Get a written accident report;
- Remain at the accident scene;
- Exchange driver and insurance information;
- Get witness contact information;
- Call your insurance company to set up a claim;
- Seek out medical treatment if necessary;
- Take pictures of the scene, and the vehicle damages;
- If the truck is a Commercial Vehicle, get a State Trooper report;
- Federal reporting requirements call for a truck crash report to be filed when the crash involves a fatality, injury, or disabling damage to any vehicle;
- Oregon requires an Oregon Traffic Accident and Insurance Report Form to be filed with the Driver and Motor Vehicle Services Division.
Hire an attorney.
Seeking effective experienced legal counsel with experience in truck accident cases is your best option. Determining the percentage of fault is a matter for those who have reviewed police reports, witness reports, car damages, roadway marks and other factors present at the time of the accident.