What Is the Most Frequent Type of Vehicle Accident in the Trucking Industry?
A trucking accident attorney can help if you have been injured or a loved one was killed in a crash with a commercial truck. Truck accidents cause thousands of deaths and tens of thousands of injuries each year. Underscoring this tragic statistic is the fact that the majority of truck accidents are preventable.
Studies have shown that driver- and truck-related factors account for a significant portion of trucking accidents. Commercial trucking companies are aware of these issues, but the industry as a whole has a long way to go in mitigating the risk of crashes.
Understanding the most frequent types of vehicle accidents in the trucking industry is important for two key reasons: First, understanding why truck accidents happen allows for the issues that lead to unnecessary injuries and fatalities to be addressed. Second, for truck accident victims and their families, determining the specific cause of an accident is a critical step on the road to financial recovery.
Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi is a respected law firm specializing in truck accident litigation. For a FREE consultation with a trucking accident attorney, call (201) 585-9111 today.
Understanding the Leading Causes of Commercial Truck Accidents
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) refers to the leading causes of commercial truck accidents as “critical reasons.” According to the FMCSA, 87% of all critical reasons are driver-related and 10% are truck-related. The remaining 3% are attributable to environmental factors.
While the vast majority of vehicle accidents in the truck industry involve driver-related factors, the single most common cause of truck accidents is brake failure. The FMCSA’s data indicate that brake problems play a role in 29% of all commercial truck accidents. That’s more than 40,000 accidents per year.
In order from most common to least common, the 10 most frequent types of commercial truck accidents are those involving:
- Brake failures
- Driving too fast for the current road and weather conditions
- Driving on unfamiliar roads
- Issues with the road
- Over-the-counter (OTC) drug use
- Inadequate surveillance (i.e., failure to check blind spots)
- Truck driver fatigue
- Truck driver stress due to work-related pressures
- Illegal driving maneuvers
- Inattentive driving
The fact that accidents involving brake failures are the most frequent type of vehicle accident in the trucking industry is cause for concern. Simply put, there is no excuse for a large commercial truck to be on the road with faulty brakes. Truck manufacturers have the capabilities required to install safe brakes on their vehicles, and trucking companies have plenty of resources to maintain their trucks according to manufacturers’ recommendations.
So why are accidents involving brake problems the most frequent type of collision? The simple answer is that companies cut corners. They put their profits first, even if this potentially means putting dangerous trucks on the road. It is this same profit-first approach that leads to trucking companies hiring inexperienced drivers and forcing drivers to meet tight deadlines while spending too many hours behind the wheel.
Regardless of the specific issue involved, if a company makes a poor decision that leads to a serious or fatal accident, that company can – and should – be held fully accountable. A trucking accident attorney will have the experience and resources necessary to identify what caused the accident and pursue the maximum compensation you deserve.
Other Notable Statistics on Commercial Truck Accidents
The FMCSA’s Large Truck Crash Causation Study is considered a milestone in researching the issues that lead to commercial trucking accidents. Studies by organizations like the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and the National Safety Council (NSC) provide additional valuable insights on the threat posed by large trucks:
- Most Truck Accidents Involve Tractor Trailers – According to the IIHS, nearly three-quarters (74%) of all commercial truck accidents involve tractor-trailers. Only about one-quarter of accidents involve single-unit trucks.
- Most Truck Accidents Occur in Rural Areas – Just over half (54%) of all truck accidents occur in rural areas. This means that slightly less than half occur in busy urban areas like eastern New Jersey and New York City.
- Most Truck Accidents Occur Off of the Interstate – While it may seem like the majority of trucking accidents occur on interstates, the NSC’s data show that nearly three quarters (73%) of truck accidents occur on non-interstate roads.
- Most Truck Accidents Occur During the Daytime – Approximately two-thirds (63%) of all truck accidents occur during daylight hours.
- Truck Accidents Are Most Common During the Summer Months – The four-month period from June through September sees the highest volume of truck accidents. However, the single month with the most truck accidents according to the NSC is October.
Contact a Trucking Accident Attorney Today
Attorneys at Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi are passionate about representing those who have been seriously injured or lost loved ones in commercial trucking accidents. These cases involve a host of unique challenges that require knowledgeable, experienced representation to overcome.
Our attorneys are top-rated truck accident lawyers who have achieved recognition from multiple elite organizations. We seek out advanced training and educational opportunities to provide the highest standard of legal service and improve our ability to achieve the optimal outcome on each client’s behalf.
Contact Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi today for a FREE case review. Our trucking accident attorneys serve clients in Fort Lee and all of New Jersey and New York.