Truck Accident Statistics

The Devastating Toll of Commercial Trucking Wrecks

Commercial trucks and tractor-trailers are the largest motor vehicles on our roads. As slow and heavy machines, they pose numerous risks to public safety, which is why there are many regulations in place intended to make trucking operators and drivers reduce risks of preventable wrecks. Unfortunately, negligence and safety violations continue to cause devastation on our roadways.

Due to their sheer size and weight, commercial trucks cause some of the most horrific accidents on public roads. They also pose increased risks of serious injuries and death. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that close to 350,000 commercial trucks are involved in auto accidents throughout the country each year.

While these commercial vehicles only comprise 4% of automobiles on the road, they account for 9% of vehicles involved in fatal wrecks. What’s more, the data indicates that truck accident fatalities are actually increasing on public roads.

To put the devastation caused by commercial trucks into perspective, consider the following statistics from the U.S. Department of Transportation:

  • In 2015, more than 3,850 people died in traffic accidents involving commercial trucks.
  • 2015 saw a 22% increase in truck accident fatalities compared to 2009.
  • 75% of trucking fatalities in 2015 involved tractor-trailers. 25% involved single-unit trucks.

Trucking Accidents by Location and Time

  • 53% of truck accidents in 2015 happened on major roads.
  • 30% of truck accidents occurred on freeways and interstates, and 14% took place on minor roads.
  • Nearly half of trucking fatalities (42%) in 2015 happened between 6 am and 3 pm.
  • Close to 20% of fatal truck accidents happened on Saturday and Sunday.

Causes & Contributing Factors

  • 34% of truck accidents involved at least one driver-related factor (including speeding, distraction, fatigue, and impairment).
  • According to a sample study conducted by the NHTSA and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the top 5 factors in serious truck accidents included: brake problems, interrupted traffic flow (i.e. traffic congestion), prescription drug use, speeding or traveling too fast for conditions, and roadway issues.

Injured in a Truck Accident? Request a Free Consultation

If you or someone you love was injured in a trucking accident that could and should have been prevented, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages, including lost income, pain and suffering, and medical expenses, among others. Our Chico truck accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley represent injured victims and families throughout Northern California, and are readily available to discuss your case and rights during a FREE consultation. Contact us today to request yours.

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