In the United States, about 1 in 10 highway deaths occurs in a crash involving a large truck. According to data recently collected from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Pennsylvania drivers are far from immune to collisions involving big commercial vehicles.
“Because of their massive sizes and heavy weights, they are more likely to cause serious damage and even death,” stated attorney and Keep Highways Safe founder, Jay Solnick. “Wrecks particularly involving semis are more common than you think, and our goal of this report is to remind people of this, so they can be more cautious behind the wheel. Vigilance is critical.”
From 2015 to 2017, KHS’s research shows that there were 381 fatalities and 7,728 injuries in Pennsylvania involving commercial trucks. The vast majority of primary factors in heavy truck vehicle failure crashes were related to tires and wheels, brakes, and unsecured or overloaded trailers, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. According to KHS, 64 percent of the trucking companies on the list ranked in the top 25 for not only the highest number of injuries but also for fatalities.
“In more cases than not, human error and failure to fully comply with FMCSA guidelines and regulations lead to deadly consequences on America’s roadways,” stated Solnick. “The truth is most large truck accidents can easily be avoided by commercial drivers practicing good judgment and following federal rules. Fortunately, most drivers do the right thing and are responsible, but there are a few bad apples in every profession.”
For every 100 million miles driven on U.S. road ways, there are 2.3 deaths and 60.5 injuries caused by big rigs. Fatal tractor-trailer accidents cost taxpayers more than $20 billion each year, $13.1 billion of which is the cost associated with loss of quality of life.