Each year in New York, a number of accidents involving large trucks are underride collisions. These accidents happen when smaller vehicles slide under the large trucks, and they often lead to fatalities and catastrophic injuries.
In order to address the problem of underride crashes, bipartisan legislation has been introduced in both the Senate and the House. The Senate bill was presented by Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand and Republican Marco Rubio. The legislation would require trucking carriers to install underride guards on the sides and the fronts of the trucks in their fleets. It would also require updated standards for rear underride guards. Currently, trucking carriers are only required to have guards on the rear ends of the vehicles, but the standards for them are outdated.
In an underride crash, car passengers frequently suffer serious head and neck injuries, many of which prove to be fatal. The safety features of their passenger vehicles are ineffective in protecting the occupants in these types of crashes. Both Gillibrand and Rubio urged their colleagues to join them in the legislation. The bill has the support of the National Safety Council and the Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety.
Truck accidents carry heightened risks of fatalities and devastating injuries to people who are involved in them. If the legislation passes, the trucking carriers will be forced to comply and to install the underride guards. This should help to save many lives by preventing other vehicles from sliding underneath the large trucks. Families who have lost loved ones in underride accidents that were caused by the negligence of the truck drivers might want to talk to experienced truck accident lawyers to see what recourse might be available.