Drivers in West Virginia can face a serious threat to safety on the road from accidents caused by large trucks. Because of the size, weight and volume of commercial trucks, drivers of personal vehicles as well as pedestrians and cyclists are much more likely to suffer serious injuries as a result of a trucking collision. While technologies are improving and regulations aim to tamp down on some of the most frequent causes of truck crashes, serious accidents continue to rise: 2019 saw the highest level of fatal truck crashes in three decades.
Large truck crash fatalities rise
While overall deaths caused by motor vehicle accidents declined in 2019 from 36,560 to 36,120 nationwide, the number of fatalities in crashes involving large trucks rose by 1%. Of course, some of these collisions may involve large privately owned trucks that weigh more than 10,000 pounds, but the vast majority are likely to be commercial trucks. These collisions are sometimes caused by a truck driver’s mistake or negligence. Truck driving can be a very monotonous task, and with all the opportunities for distraction presented by mobile phones and other electronics, distracted driving can be common and very dangerous.
Distraction and fatigue pose a threat
Another common contributor to trucking accidents is truck driver fatigue. Even though regulations limit the number of hours that commercial drivers may operate their vehicles, they might feel pressured to not take necessary breaks. Eye strain and drowsiness can have some of the same effects as drunk driving, leading to severe truck crashes.
There are a number of other issues that may lead to large truck collisions, including reckless or negligent driving, dangerous passing behavior or speeding. If you have been injured in a truck collision caused by someone else, a personal injury lawyer might help you seek compensation for your damages.