The U.S. trucking industry continues to grow despite the modern-day mindset where products must move quickly from point A to point B. One would assume that cargo jets do the bulk of this work, but trucks transport 70% of all goods. According to analysts, this busy industry is also seeing a 52% uptick of crashes involving trucks. Moreover, 74% of all passenger car fatalities involve a truck. In fact, experts predict that truck accident fatality will be the fifth most common cause of death by 2030.
What are the top causes of crashes?
Many assume that drugs and alcohol are the most significant contributing factors to crashes, but this is not true. The major causes include:
- Mechanical defects: Tire defects account for 30% of all truck-related crashes, but brake defects and other faulty pieces of equipment contribute as well.
- Fatigue: The federal government relaxed the rules regarding maximum hours behind the wheel during the pandemic, enabling drivers to push themselves beyond the breaking point.
- Poor training: Drivers may not understand the safety concerns and proper driving techniques until it is too late.
- Aggressive driving: Likely tied to stress inherent in the job, road rage behavior manifests as tailgating, brake-checking, swerving, and more.
These cases are complex
The large size of the vehicles and the deadly nature of the crashes bring complexity to truck-related crashes that are not as common in other types of vehicles. There are also major business interests involved, including a $600 billion trucking industry, parts manufacturers, and insurance companies resisting the victims’ claims because they often involve large settlements. So, victims and their families need to get the help they need when dealing with the tragic fallout from a severe or fatal collision.