Did you know that more than 100,000 people are injured in truck accidents across the nation each year? According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, truck accidents are common occurrences, happening at an average rate of nearly 11 times per day nationwide. But despite a clear danger, state and federal legislators are hesitant to make changes that could save lives.
A truck accident can result because of a number of reasons. As you may have read in last week’s post, driver fatigue has been cited in a number of crashes, including the one that injured actor Tracy Morgan. Other causes include improper vehicle maintenance, speeding and unsafe drivers who are permitted to drive trucks despite the potential risk they pose to other drivers.
And because of the size and weight of most trucks, these accidents are almost always serious if not fatal for passengers in smaller vehicles.
Some believe that legislators are slow to change regulations because no one has discovered the fine line between ensuring driver safety and meeting the needs of the economy. Some in the trucking industry point out that they are already stretched thin with drivers, which could be causing a number of the fatigue-related accidents. But, if more trucks are introduced to roadways, the chances of a truck accident also increase.
Though most of the nation agrees that changes need to be made, it’s clear that the problem is bigger and far more complex than most had imagined. Whether we see changes toward stricter regulations or not remains to be seen, though a majority of our readers likely hope that this does not come at the cost of more lives.