Trucking accidents can be fatal, and a number of common causes are to blame.
The trucking industry has provided a number of benefits. Trucks are able to transport goods across the country, allowing retail stores to offer everything from the latest fashions virtually overnight to fresh vegetables and fruits in the cold months of winter. Unfortunately, there are also some negatives to the commercial trucking industry. Big rigs are present on our nation’s highways in large numbers and crashes between these large vehicles and smaller passenger cars can be catastrophic.
Causes of trucking accidents
A number of factors can contribute to commercial truck accidents. Some common examples include:
Scheduling. Scheduling issues that contribute to truck accidents fall into one of two broad categories: hours of service issues and delivery schedules. Trucking companies may encourage drivers to operate their vehicles in violation of federal hours of service regulations, including driving for too long or not taking the required number and length of breaks. Companies may also provide inadequate delivery schedules, anticipating drivers to make it from one location to another within too short a period of time.
Training. Without proper training, the risk of an accident can increase.
Negligence. A failure by the truck driver to follow posted speed limits and other traffic regulations as well as issues involving driving while impaired or tired can also contribute to a crash.
These are just a few of the more common causes. Additional causes can include a failure to properly maintain the truck itself, lending to faulty braking systems.
Car and truck crash statistics
Current estimates by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report that 32,719 fatalities were connected to motor vehicle crashes in 2013 and 32,675 during 2014. The federal agency further broke down estimates on a regional basis. Region one was composed of Maine, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire, and experienced a 4 percent increase in the number of fatalities connected to crashes over the previous year.
The most current data for crashes involving commercial trucks is from 2013, also by NHTSA. This data reports there were 342,000 police-reported traffic accidents involving large trucks. 3,964 people were killed in accidents involving large trucks, representing a 0.5 percent increase over the previous year, and approximately 95,000 were injured. Notably, 71 percent of the fatalities involved occupants of other vehicles, while only 17 percent were occupants of the commercial truck. There was also a 13 percent increase between 2012 and 2013 in the number of non-occupants killed in these crashes.
Remedies available for those injured in truck accidents
In many cases, remedies are available for those injured in truck accidents. These remedies can include monetary compensation to help cover medical bills, lost wages and other costs associated with the accident. Contact an experienced Connecticut truck accident attorney to discuss your case and better ensure you receive the full compensation you are entitled.