The Real Cause of Trucking Accidents


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There's no doubt about it, trucking accidents are deadly. The most recent data recorded in 2012, indicates that 3,514 people lost their lives as a result of collisions with large transport vehicles. Those collisions claimed an additional 104,000 injured people. The overwhelming majority of those who died were people inside passenger vehicles. What Makes Big Rig Wrecks Deadly
  • Weight- Big rigs weigh 20 to 30 times more than the average passenger vehicle.
  • Height- Big rigs are also much taller, which increases the risk of a small car being overridden.
  • Braking Capacity- Even if the two vehicles brake at the same time, the big rig will travel 20 to 40 percent farther.
Who is at Fault The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) performed a sample study of a single state to determine, which driver was at fault more often. It was determined that the trucker was at fault in 48 percent of collisions, the driver of the passenger car was responsible in 40.2 percent and the blame was shared in 8.9 percent of the wrecks. In only 2.9 percent of cases, neither party was to blame. When the Trucker is Responsible The most common factor among trucker-caused collisions was speed. In some cases, the trucker was driving unlawfully fast, while, in others, he was below the posted limit, but was still driving too fast considering the road conditions at the time. The second largest factor in cases where the trucker was at fault was distraction. This included things like talking on a phone, adjusting the radio and fatigue. Although there are legal limits as to how many hours a driver can spend behind the wheel, exhaustion can set in long before. Moreover, some companies encourage or allow their drivers to falsify or adjust their logs to indicate they were within legal limits, when they were no longer capable of driving safely. In the cases studied by the FHWA, the trucker was found to be at fault more often in the following types of collisions:
  • Rear-end slow (50.7 percent)
  • Left turn‚Äîboth same roadway (45.4 percent)
  • Rear-end turn (51.5 percent)
  • Right turn‚Äîboth same roadway (43.1 percent)
  • Sideswipe (51.1 percent)
  • Backing (81.5 percent)
When the Driver of the Passenger Vehicle is Responsible In situations where the driver of the passenger vehicle was at fault, the most common factor was also speed. Additionally, alcohol was in the driver's system in 26.3 percent of collisions. According to the FHWA, the driver was responsible more often for following types of wrecks:
  • Left turn‚Äîcrossing traffic (48.4 percent)
  • Right turn‚Äîcrossing traffic (54.4 percent)
  • Head-on (71.2 percent)
  • Angle (48.5 percent)
There will always be people arguing about who is at fault, most often in trucking accident cases. Statistics still indicate the trucker is usually to blame. However, drivers of passenger vehicles cause an overwhelming majority of head-on collisions, which are more likely to be lethal. Researchers also indicate that it's possible officers assigned blame to the trucker most often out of bias.

Charleston Trucking Accident Attorney

The bottom-line is that both parties cause accidents. and either driver may be injured or die as a result. Whether you are a trucker, who was not at fault for a collision, or in a passenger vehicle, which was struck by a big rig, you may need help to prove you were not at fault. Moreover, a court may award damages to the victim. Please use our online form or call one of our lawyers at 1(800)610-2546 to discuss your case.

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