Commercial truck accidents are common. This is unfortunate, as these accidents are a common cause of some of the most severe injuries that occur on the road. These devastating accidents occur on a daily basis and have fatal consequences for many individuals involved.
For many, a collision with a commercial truck could alter the course of their life forever. Understanding how common these accidents are and how best to prevent them could be an important step in reducing the number of severe injuries. When these crashes happen, an insurance claim or a civil lawsuit could be the injured party’s best opportunity to pursue justice and compensation.
Truck Accident Statistics
The best way to understand how common truck accidents are is a thorough review of truck crash statistics. One of the organizations that carefully studies statistics relating to commercial truck accidents is the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). According to the IIHS, there were more than 4,100 traffic fatalities involving large trucks in 2018 alone.
Of those, more than 67 percent of those fatalities involved occupants of vehicles other than a commercial truck. Another 15 percent of these deaths are attributed to pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists. These figures show that truck accidents are less of a risk to truck drivers and more of a risk to everyone else.
Unfortunately, the rate of commercial truck accidents is heading in the wrong direction, and fatalities are increasing.
For years, the number of truck accident fatalities had steadily dropped in the United States. The number of truck accidents was on a general downward trend from over 4,000 deaths in 1979 to just over 2,000 deaths in 2010.
The unfortunate news is that IIHS data reflects a steady increase in traffic fatalities since then. Deaths have climbed every year since 2011, which has steadily undone the progress brought on by technological improvements. From 2009 to 2018, traffic accident fatalities increased by 31 percent.
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Why Truck Accidents Are a Common Occurrence
Truck accidents are a common occurrence for many different reasons. The most common cause of a truck crash is human error. When the negligence of a commercial truck driver results in a crash, the driver or trucking company could face liability for any injuries that occur. Some of the factors that commonly cause truck accidents include:
- Intoxication. Intoxication from alcohol or drugs is a serious danger for any motorist, but their use is especially problematic for the operators of commercial vehicles. The use of drugs or alcohol could inhibit a truck driver’s decision-making ability or reflexes, among other things.
- Fatigue. Fatigue is a major issue among commercial truck operators. These drivers spend long hours behind the wheel, and some drivers ignore federal regulations regarding rest breaks. This is unfortunate, as fatigue has the same harmful impacts on a person’s ability to drive as alcohol or drugs.
- Overloaded Trailer. In an effort to cut costs, some truck operators overload their trailer. This is dangerous, as overloaded trailers are more likely to roll over and require more space to come to a complete stop.
- Speeding. Like with any driver, a speeding truck operator is much more likely to cause a crash. Truck drivers speed for a variety of reasons, including attempting to complete their route in time to head home early or begin a new leg of their journey.
You Could Be Entitled To Seek Compensation Following a Truck Accident
For many people, the aftermath of a severe truck accident can be a blur. Ambulance rides, emergency room visits, and police interviews can be overwhelming, especially if you have suffered a serious injury in the crash. After you have addressed your medical needs following a truck accident, we can help you with the next steps of your accident claim or lawsuit.
We Can Help You with the Following:
- Determining liability, which can be complicated in a truck accident case
- Building evidence to show the driver’s negligence
- Assigning a value for all of your losses
- Negotiating with the insurance companies
- Taking your case to court, if needed
- And more
We encourage you to begin your case as soon as possible. In Georgia, you have only two years to file a lawsuit, according to O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33. By getting started early, you can protect your legal options.
At Bader Scott Injury Lawyers, we understand how common truck accidents are, and we know how to pursue legal claims resulting from severe truck crashes. We proudly serve accident victims in the Atlanta area. Call (404) 888-8888 for your free consultation today.