About one in ten deaths on the highways is the result of a crash involving a large truck, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s Highway Loss Data Institute. Most of these deaths involve passengers of smaller vehicles. This is hardly surprising when you consider trucks weigh between 20 and 30 times as much as most passenger cars. This, coupled with their height, puts people in trucks in a far safer position than people in cars.
There are more than a million large trucks on the road in the United States alone. Common causes of truck accidents include:
- Loss of control of the truck
- Vehicle failures
- Being cut off by another vehicle
- Poor road conditions
- Traveling too fast for conditions
Some statistics from 2015 include:
- 3,852 people died in crashes involving large trucks
- Only 16 % of those fatalities were occupants of trucks
- 69 % of those killed were occupants of either cars or other passenger vehicles
- 15 % of those killed in large truck accidents were pedestrians, motorcyclists, or bicyclists
- The fatality rate in large truck crashes in 2015 was 22 % higher than in 2009
Statistics Regarding Time and Place of Truck Accidents
Only 30% of all truck crashes occurred on interstates and freeways. The majority of truck crashes – 53% – occurred on other major roads; 14% of all truck crashes involving fatalities occurred on minor roadways.
Accidents happen at all times of the day and night; about 18 % of fatal truck accidents occur between midnight and 6 a.m. and 17% of fatal truck crashes occur between 6 p.m. and midnight. However, 42% of large truck crashes that involve death occurred between the hours of 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. This is significantly higher than the percent of crash deaths which did not involve a large truck. Only 30% of all fatal crashes not involving large trucks occurred between the hours of 6 a.m. and 3 p.m.
In examining the data from 2015, fatal crashes occur fairly evenly throughout the work week. Monday had the fewest fatalities, at 15%, with Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday all recording 17% of truck fatalities; 18% of all truck fatality cases occurred on Thursdays. Saturday and Sunday combined had 17% of all truck related fatalities, compared to 36% for those not involving large trucks.
Comparing Large Truck Crashes and Passenger Vehicle Crashes
Large trucks, SUVs and pickup trucks share similar data regarding deaths during roll over crashes. In 2015, 52% of large truck occupant deaths occurred when their vehicles rolled over. This is nearly double the statistic for occupant deaths in car rollovers, at 23%.
A loaded tractor trailer needs more than 40% more distance to stop than cars.
Finally, safety belts had a similar rate of use in truck and passenger vehicle fatalities, at 47% and 48% respectively.
If You Have Been Injured in a Truck Accident
If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, contact the lawyers at Miller Weber Kory, LLP at 602-648-4045. Our attorneys have extensive experience litigating truck accidents. We will leave no stone unturned in our quest to get you the compensation you are entitled to.