In New York and across the U.S., commercial truck accidents are all too common. Though the past two decades have seen a decrease in accident rates, with many crashes being prevented by new safety measures and technology, every increase can be a cause for concern. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration just published a report revealing a 3 percent increase in fatal truck crashes from 2015 to 2016.
The year 2016 saw a total of 4,213 large trucks involved in fatal crashes with 4,317 fatalities in all. Of those, 722 were large-truck occupants. In all, the truck involvement rate remains constant; this rate calculates how many large trucks are involved in fatal crashes for every 100 million miles they travel.
Most of the accidents took place at night between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. Approximately 61 percent occurred in rural areas, followed by 27 percent on interstate highways. Rural interstate highways, combining both categories, became the site of 15 percent of accidents.
The increase in the number of registered commercial trucks from 11.2 to 11.5 million may partly explain the rise in fatal crashes. The number of non-fatal crashes involving trucks had risen as well: approximately 104,000 crashes in 2016, compared to 83,000 in 2015.
Speeding, whether on the trucker’s part or the other driver’s, caused the most fatal crashes. Distracted driving was the second most frequent cause.
It can be hard from the victim’s point of view to prove that a distracted truck driver caused an accident. This is why filing an injury claim usually requires the assistance of a lawyer. Lawyers may utilize a wide network of professionals to build up the case, and they may be able to calculate a fair settlement based on an accurate assessment of the injuries and vehicle damage. Victims might have their lawyer negotiate out of court or proceed straight to litigation.