Vehicular accidents are common kinds of personal injury cases. In 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that approximately 3 million people in the U.S. suffer nonfatal wounds in such incidents every year. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Admission, or FMCSA, 2018 saw 107,000 non-deadly truck crashes out of the approximately 499,000 reported to the police.
In Wisconsin alone, the state Department of Transportation notes that in 2019, the population sustained 1,986 injuries from large truck crashes. FMCSA’s 2018 Commercial Motor Vehicle Traffic Safety Facts sheet attributes 13% of automotive deaths to wrecks involving large trucks and buses. Crashes involving trucks have many causes, some more recurrent than others.
Fatigue is one of the top contributors to truck accidents. Truck drivers are at risk of falling asleep at the wheel after long hours of driving without taking breaks.
2. Weather conditions
Severe weather such as icy roads, high winds and rain has the potential to send conveyances, especially big, heavy ones careening off roads and swerving into other automobiles. The risk rises in places like Wisconsin with its frozen, snowy winters. Roads in poor shape from lack of proper care only add to the chances of an accident.
Driving over the speed limit and poor vehicle maintenance are also leading causes. Trucks, especially fully loaded ones, are harder to stop because of their weight and size. When a speeding driver loses control, the greater poundage actually causes a rapid gain in velocity, making it even more difficult. Inadequate maintenance, such as neglecting to check brakes and tires, also increases the likelihood of a truck crash.
It is important for truck drivers to rest when needed, show caution in inclement weather and be responsible. Doing so may help keep themselves and others safe and alive.