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Factors involved in trucking accidents

Many California motorists have experienced driving near large trucks and the fear that often elicits. Large truck accidents resulted in 3,852 fatalities in 2015, with 69 percent of the victims being occupants in passenger vehicles, while 15 percent were bicyclers, pedestrians and motorcyclists. A 2016 study from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety revealed some of the factors involved in large truck accidents and explored some ways to prevent this.

While the situation has improved over the years, there is still concern with the high number of casualties resulting from semi truck accidents. The IIHS study found that vehicle defects, such as brake violations, loading or mechanical defects, significantly increase the chances of trucks being involved in accidents. Driver age also played a role. Drivers 60 and older had a higher risk of crashing than drivers 30 to 59. Fatigue also played a role in the collisions, with drivers who had been behind the wheel for at least 12 hours after they had had an extended sleep being 86 percent more likely to crash than drivers who were more refreshed. People who drove for more than five hours without a break had double the risk of crashing than those who did not.

Another factor the study found related to drivers with the short-haul exemption. These trucks, which were less likely to travel on interstates, have higher risks of crashing, partly because these vehicles demonstrated a higher rate of defects. The crash risk for drivers with the short-haul exemption were five times as high as those for drivers who did not have the exemption.

Regardless of the cause, truck accidents have the potential to cause catastrophic injuries to others who are on the road at the time. If it can be demonstrated that the collision was caused by a sleep-deprived truck driver, an attorney could assist an injured victim in seeking appropriate compensation.

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Andrew E. Bakos & Associates, PC
1420 River Park Drive
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Sacramento, California 95815

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