Dangers of Commercial Truck Accidents

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports about 500,000 commercial truck accidents each year. In 2019, there were 4,119 fatalities reported caused by truck accidents. Most of the deaths (67%) were the occupants of passenger vehicles involved in accidents with trucks. Another 15% of the fatalities were motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians. The remaining 18% of the fatalities include the truck drivers and those not killed by being directly involved in the crashes but by the toxic spills.

Dangers of Commercial Truck Accidents

The dangers of commercial truck accidents come from impact (speed and weight) and cargo.

Impact Risks are Higher

The weight may be up to 26,000 pounds or more if it is pulling a second trailer. When hit by a truck weighing so much, occupants of a much lighter passenger vehicle do not have much of a chance of escaping harm and perhaps death. If the accident is at high speed or head-on, it is extremely dangerous. There is so much weight involved in a collision that it causes a tremendous impact.

Imbalanced Cargo

If a cargo load is not balanced properly, this can cause a truck driver to lose control of the vehicle. For example, the truck can flip over when making a turn or go into a dangerous jack-knife. With sudden braking, the cargo may shift. This may cause the driver to lose control.

Hazardous Materials

The cargo transported may be hazardous materials, including specialty tank trucks that haul flammable gases and dangerous chemicals. A regular semi-truck may transport chemicals in 55-gallon drums or cartons of bottles or powdered chemicals. An accident with a truck hauling hazardous materials may cause a toxic spill that can harm the surrounding area and any people or animals nearby.

Postal Service and Common Carriers

It should not be a surprise that there are many accidents involving delivery trucks operated by the United States Postal Service (USPS) and common carriers. USPS reports that 15% of its fleet of 230,000 vehicles is involved in an accident each year, which are about 34,500 accidents. The statistics for accidents involving the other common carriers are 2,300 per year for UPS and 900 per year for FedEx.

Claims for Damages

If you or a loved one becomes injured or dies from an accident involving a commercial truck or by its aftermath of a toxic spill, immediately call (281) 475-4535. Your attorney will discuss with you the types of damages that may become part of your claim.

Damages may include the following:

  • Death Benefits for Surviving Family Members
  • Financial Compensation for Loss of Limbs, Disability, and Permanent Impairment
  • Reimbursement for Medical Care, Personal Care, and Physical Therapy
  • Treatment for Mental Health Problems
  • Rehabilitative and Occupational Therapy
  • Loss of Income, Wages, and Employee Benefits
  • Financial Compensation for Scarring and Disfigurement
  • Loss of Enjoyment or Quality of Life
  • Loss of Future Earnings
  • Also, Pain and Suffering (which includes physical, emotional, and mental)

If you or a loved one has been in an accident, make sure to contact a trusted and experienced attorney. Get a free consultation if you or a loved one is injured or killed in an accident with a commercial vehicle. You will not have to pay any fees unless your case results in a financial settlement. Call a trucking accident attorney at (281) 475-4535 or simply fill out the webform to be contacted.