Truck accidents continue to pose a threat to others on the road in Missouri and across the country. Drunk, distracted or drowsy driving are hazardous in any type of vehicle, but the danger escalates dramatically when a negligent driver sits behind the wheel of a massive semi truck. The weight and mass of these trucks mean that other people involved in a crash have a much higher chance of serious injuries or even fatalities. The number of fatal truck accidents has continued to climb, a disturbing trend that has sparked attention.
Indeed, the number of deadly trucking crashes has risen at almost three times the overall rate of fatal accidents. In 2017 alone, 4,102 people died in crashes with large trucks. While 17 percent of these lives belonged to the occupants of the trucks, 68 percent involved those in other cars and passenger vehicles, while 14 percent were motorcyclists, bicyclists or pedestrians. This number marks a 28 percent increase over the death toll from truck accidents in 2009.
Safety advocates warned about the disturbing figures, saying that the same type of accident increase in other forms of transportation would spark growing outrage. One compared the numbers to the impact of two 737 airliner crashes each month. Despite the statistics, however, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not sought to issue new regulations. Some activists are demanding the NHTSA impose rules that could reduce the number of rear-end truck crashes by requiring technologies like forward crash avoidance systems. Other safety agencies have recommended these types of rules for decades.
Truck accidents can be particularly devastating, causing catastrophic injuries and permanent disabilities. People injured in a crash due to a negligent truck driver can work with a lawyer to pursue compensation for their damages, including medical bills and lost wages.