Truck accidents are unfortunately a common occurrence in Pennsylvania and around the country. Because of the size and weight of these massive vehicles, other road users face an elevated risk of serious and often fatal injuries. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration statistics indicate that these concerns are well-founded, especially as the last several years show a trend of rising large truck accidents and an attendant increase in fatalities. From 2015 to 2017, the percentage of fatal crashes involving a large truck rose each year, as did the number of fatalities in accidents involving large trucks and buses.
While the number of fatal crashes overall was on the rise, more truck drivers and their passengers also died in trucking accidents, while fatal work zone crashes involving large trucks also escalated. Of course a number of factors can contribute to accidents, but the impact of a large semi-truck or 18-wheeler in a crash can make it particularly deadly. Safety experts noted that distracted driving can be a particular problem when truck drivers are paying attention to smartphones or tablets rather than the road. According to the FMCSA, mobile phones and other distractions rank in the top five reasons for truck crashes caused by driver actions or negligence.
Texting while driving is a major threat to safety in any vehicle, but that threat is amplified for truck drivers controlling massive vehicles. In addition, fatigued drivers are more easily distracted and are far less able to exercise good judgment when behind the wheel in case of an emergency.
When people are injured in an accident caused by a negligent truck driver, they may face catastrophic injuries and skyrocketing medical bills. A personal injury lawyer can work with truck crash victims to pursue compensation for their damages, including pain and suffering, medical costs and lost wages.