Truck accidents may not be as frequent as car accidents, but they can be just as serious-sometimes even more so. Still, not many people know about the dangers that trucks can pose to other motorists. Here are five facts about truck accidents that you may not know.
Commercial trucks and buses have been chronic dangers on our nation's roads. Commercial carriers and motor coach companies have often been found to cut corners on safety, sometimes leading to tragic results. They may delay required maintenance, cut back on training, employ dangerous drivers and even encourage certain rules violations -- all in the name of improving the bottom line.
Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously approved a bill meant to make it easier for self-driving cars to get on the road -- and to block states from restricting them. The bill is now before the Senate Commerce Committee, and the trucking industry has urged lawmakers to include autonomous commercial trucks in the legislation.
Collisions between a car and a semi-truck can be deadly. An estimated 475,000 large trucks are involved collisions every year. This results in more than 140,000 injuries and 5,000 fatalities. These collisions are caused by distracted driving, over-tired, over-worked truck drivers, failure to properly maintain equipment, excessive speed and a host of other causes, all of which are preventable.
New Mexico drivers who regularly share the roads with truck drivers may know that, when a large commercial truck becomes involved in an accident, the size and mass of an 18-wheeler is more likely to cause serious or even life-threatening injuries to occupants of other vehicles. While the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration found that, while the number of large trucks that were involved in injury accidents slightly decreased, the number of trucks involved in fatal accidents increased.
New Mexico truck drivers may have heard about the Brake Safety Day that took place on May 3 and was sponsored by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance. It was an unannounced event that resulted in 9,524 inspections in 33 states and 10 Canadian provinces. Of the trucks inspected, 1,989 were taken out of service, and of those, 1,146 were taken out of service because of brake violations.
From June 6 to June 8, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance conducted its annual International Roadcheck. The inspection was conducted in New Mexico and throughout the U.S. and Canada. The CSVA says that the purpose of the yearly event is to check for compliance, enforce rules and educate drivers. Cargo security was among the top priorities this year.