TRUCK ACCIDENT FACTS AND STATISTICS
According to the Department of Transportation (DOT), millions of commercial trucks (roughly 4.3 % of all highway vehicles) move goods over the national transportation network each year. This high number of commercial vehicles presents an issue for motorists who must share congested highways with said trucks. With commercial trucks and big rigs weighing from 8,000 to 80,000 pounds it’s easy to comprehend how truck accidents can be so devastating. In the best-case scenario, it is only the car that is completely destroyed. In the worst cases, there is loss of life and other permanent injuries. The effects of a truck collision are long reaching, with families shouldering physical, psychological, and monetary burdens post-accident.
Roadways in California are among the most congested in the nation, and subsequently the most dangerous state in the nation in terms of truck accident injuries and fatalities given the high volume of freight movement. According to the DOT, 79% of the people injured in a truck accident were occupants of other vehicles and 5% of victims were non-occupants (e.g. on the sidewalk or crosswalk). Drivers or other occupants of the truck sustained only 16% of injuries, demonstrating just how vulnerable we are to injury in a truck accident. The numbers for fatalities in 2015 are similar – 81% of truck accident fatalities were occupants of other vehicles and 9% were non-occupants.
COMMON CAUSES OF TRUCK ACCIDENTS
Leading causes of Semi Truck accidents in the US in 2015 included:
- 34% Driver Impairment from Alcohol
- 23% Speeding
- 20% Driver Impairment from Drugs
- 13% Driver Fatigue
- 10% Mechanical Issues
Commercial truck drivers are required to have special training and follow safety regulations to ensure the safety of everyone on the road. Unfortunately, trucking companies often pressure their drivers to meet unrealistic deadlines, which leads to truckers operating on very little sleep or taking drugs to stay awake – two of the most common causes of truck accidents. Equipment failure is another common problem. While trucking companies are required to maintain their vehicles, many of them cut corners, putting public safety at risk. The first step we take in any commercial truck accident case is to determine the cause of the accident so we can hold the responsible party liable for damages.
PURSUING A TRUCK ACCIDENT CLAIM
At California Personal Injury Attorneys, our experienced truck accident attorneys know how to navigate the complexities of a truck accident lawsuit. In many cases, the law requires different types of insurance for truck drivers. This may include accident coverage, hazardous materials insurance, private liability, and more. The involvement of several insurance companies can make it difficult to determine who is liable and which company must pay. Insurance companies are well aware of this and try to avoid paying up by passing blame when possible. With our truck accident attorneys by your side, you can be assured that you’ll achieve a fair and just settlement.
WHY CHOOSE US
If you or a family member has been involved in a commercial trucking accident, you may be dealing with injuries that will permanently affect your health, quality of living, and finances. Truck drivers have a legal responsibility to protect others on the road. When this does not occur, they must be held liable for the damage they have caused. It is essential that you do not provide a statement to insurance companies until after you have consulted with an experienced truck accident lawyer. If you have recently been involved in a trucking accident, please contact us immediately so we can provide proper counsel and guidance as you seek compensation for your damages.