Data provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that there were 89 large trucks involved in fatal motor vehicle accidents in Missouri in 2012. These crashes constituted 8 percent of the total fatal vehicle crashes that occurred in the state that year. Nationwide, 2012 reportedly saw a 4 percent increase in fatal large truck crashes from 2011.
According to the NHTSA, 81 percent of fatal large truck accidents involve multiple vehicles. In addition, 2 percent of truck drivers that were involved in fatal accidents in 2012 had blood alcohol concentration levels equal to or greater than .08 percent. The report also revealed that 18 percent of truck drivers had accrued at least one prior traffic conviction prior to an accident.
In addition to the numbers of fatal crashes, the period between 2011 and 2012 witnessed an 18 percent increase in people injured in truck accidents. Approximately 73 percent of those injured in a truck accident in 2012 were the occupants of one of the other vehicles involved rather than the truck itself. Moreover, many of these accidents seem to have occurred during daylight hours; a majority occurred during weekdays between the hours of 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Though the NHTSA’s data may not necessarily indicate greater degrees of negligence among truck drivers compared to other motorists, an accident involving a large truck could inevitably be more dangerous than other forms of crashes. While commercial vehicle companies are required to adhere to various state and federal regulations to operate in the U.S., a lawyer representing a victim could scrutinize records to determine if the company was actually in compliance with those regulations in the event of a truck accident.
Source: U.S. Department of Transportation , “Large Trucks“, October 24, 2014