Trucking plays a major role in the economies of both Texas and the United States. Many trucks in America are responsible for freight movement over land and are major tools used in manufacturing transportation and in warehousing. Though the transportation industry is vital for many different business practices, accidents involving large trucks happen more often than one may think. In fact, a recent study found Texas has the highest number of fatal trucking crashes.
Conducted over a three-year period from 2015 to 2017, researchers at 1POINT21 Interactive found large trucks were involved in nearly 11,000 fatal crashes on U.S. roadways. These accidents were responsible for the deaths of over 12,000 people. Moreover, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Texas is home to the most fatal trucking crashes, with 1,358. I-10 specifically has been identified as the deadliest roadway in the nation for these accidents.
Why Fatal Trucking Crashes Happen
With such high numbers of fatal trucking crashes occurring in Texas and across the nation, it’s important to understand why these accidents happen in order to prevent further deaths. Though most big rig accidents have multiple contributing factors, common concerns include vehicle failure, overcompensating while steering, tailgating, and driver fatigue.
In addition to these factors, it’s also important to consider the weight of the truck. Because 18-wheelers are so large and often carry heavy materials, their stopping distance is much longer than that of a passenger vehicle. For example, if a passenger car and a truck are both driving at 40 mph and begin to brake at the same time, the truck will travel 45 feet further than the car before coming to a complete stop.
Common Truck Accident Injuries
While not all trucking accidents are fatal, the injuries suffered can be devastating, including:
Back and Neck Injuries
The force of the impact of a large truck can cause all types of neck and back injuries, including dislocated discs in the spine and permanent disability due to paralysis. Because the back and neck are incredibly critical to everyday activities, these injuries often prevent victims from being able to perform basic tasks independently.
Broken arms, legs, and other extremities are incredibly common in trucking accidents. Because truck crashes are so powerful, bones can be more easily splintered or broken than in a car accident.
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
Trauma to the head can often result in a brain injury or a TBI, which can be life altering. Brain injuries can happen even without direct trauma to the head. Symptoms include confusion, nausea, vision problems, and cognitive difficulties.
Powerful blunt force trauma often occurs in accidents with large trucks, and it can cause internal bleeding in vital organs like the bladder, liver, kidney, pancreas, and spleen. These injuries are incredibly difficult to treat.
Broken glass and metal particles can leave big rig accident victims with cuts and other lacerations. These injuries are often very painful and can leave victims with massive scars that may never heal.
Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis
Injuries sustained to the spinal cord after a trucking accident can be particularly devastating, as they often cause paralysis. Spinal cord damage isn’t always initially apparent, so it is important that MRIs and X-rays are conducted to determine the full extent of the injury.
Truck accidents are 10 times more likely to be fatal than a crash involving another passenger vehicle. When a trucking accident results in the death of a loved one, it devastates their loved ones. Consulting a truck accident attorney can help to hold the parties involved responsible.
Lubbock Trial Lawyers For Truck Accidents
When a fatal trucking crash occurs, consult an experienced personal injury attorney. Large commercial trucks are owned by companies often reluctant to hand over incriminating details. At Liggett Law Group we understand how catastrophic big rig accidents can be and we work to ensure victims receive the compensation they deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation.