Missouri truck drivers may want to exercise more caution when they are on the road. The number of trucks involved in fatal and injury accidents is on the rise, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Fatalities from truck accidents rose 4 percent, from 3,781 in 2011 to 3,921 in 2012. Some 73 percent of the people killed were riding in other vehicles, while 18 percent were riding in large trucks; the remainder was pedestrians on bicyclists, the federal agency said. The number of people injured rose significantly, from 88,000 in 2011 to 104,000 in 2012. A large truck is defined as one that has a gross weight of 10,000 pounds or more.
Some 333,000 large trucks were involved in accidents in 2012. Large trucks are more likely to be involved in accidents than passenger vehicles. The federal agency says 81 percent of large truck accidents involved multiple vehicles while only 58 percent of passenger car accidents involved multiple vehicles. In almost half the fatal accidents involving trucks, both the truck and the vehicle it collided with were driving in a straight line. One of the vehicles was going around a curve in 12 percent of the fatal accidents.
Statistics for accidents involving large trucks are not pretty, especially for occupants in passenger vehicles. Because a truck is so much larger than passenger vehicles, the smaller vehicles may suffer more damage. Occupants of these cars are more likely to suffer serious injuries or even die in collisions involving trucks. Victims may choose to file a truck accident claim in court if they choose to seek compensation for damages from the truck driver.
Source: National Center for Statistics and Analysis, "Traffic Safety Facts – Large Trucks", December 22, 2014