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Car Accidents with Commercial Vehicles

By Evan L. Kaine

Summer vacations are in full swing and many of us our venturing out on the open road. Whether or not your family will be on the highway for 3 hours or going cross country, the journey ahead can pose a threat to you and your loved ones. We are constantly sharing tips on how you can stay safe while driving, but one topic that goes unnoticed is the dangers of commercial vehicle, tractor trailers and other large trucks.

Tractor Trailer Accidents

Let’s face it, the number of commercial trucks you pass or have to deal with along your drive becomes overwhelming.  There are 15.5 million trucks in the United States and 13% of them are semis, big rigs, 18 wheelers or tractor trailers. So it comes as no surprise that you will be dealing with one of these commercial vehicles on your road trip to your summer vacation. But before we provide a few helpful, summer driving tips, consider these tractor trailer accident statistics:

  • 98% of all tractor trailer accidents result in at least one fatality
  • Fatal tractor trailer accidents cost Americans more than $20 billion each year, $13.1 billion of which is the cost associated with loss of an injured victim’s quality of life
  • For every 100 million miles driven on U.S. roads, there are 2.3 deaths and 60.5 injuries caused by tractor trailer accidents
  • Nearly 90% of commercial truck accidents are caused by some sort of human error
  • Driver fatigue is responsible for nearly 30% of all commercial truck accidents
  • Nearly 130,000 individuals are injured each year in truck accidents

Prevent Car Accidents with Commercial Vehicles

As you can see, any accident between a car and a commercial truck makes for a dangerous situation. Because so many families are traveling between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend, there is a greater risk of tractor trailer vs. car accidents.  Therefore, we have the following tips for car drivers headed to summer vacation.

  • Don’t ever drive in the “No Zone” – the area behind and beside a commercial truck where the truck driver has limited visibility
  • Do not change lanes abruptly in front of a truck
  • Misjudging an approaching truck’s speed at an intersection and making a left turn in front of the truck
  • Merging improperly into traffic – causing truck to maneuver or brake quickly
  • Pulling into traffic from the roadside in front of a truck without sufficiently accelerating
  • Driving between large trucks is a No-No!

At Kaine Law, we want everyone to practice safe driving skills – especially when dealing with the vast number of trucks on the road.  Your final destination will be there, so take your time and drive safely!

Published May 23, 2018
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