With speeds up to 70 miles-per-hour on an interstate highway, a collision can happen in a split second. Any type of impact can be life changing, but when tractor-trailers are involved, the results are usually far more devastating.
Trucking accidents can cause life-changing injuries such as
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Permanent disability
Trucking accidents can occur for a number of reasons, but it is vital to remember that there are many types drivers on the road today and the most important thing you can do is to learn to be a safe one.
Statistics Blame Automobile Drivers
According to a recent article in The Trinidad Times, there were 50 fatalities and 138 injuries as a result of truck and car collisions in Colorado during 2010. However, according to state records, the drivers of the cars caused 56 percent of those collisions. Additionally, AAA statistics report that automobile drivers caused 80 percent of fatal accidents involving cars and trucks.
What You Can Do
What can you do to make the road a safer place? Some rules of the road:
- Never cut in front of a truck. A truck traveling 60 miles per hour may take 100 yards to come to a full stop.
- When passing a truck, do so quickly to minimize your time in the truck’s blind spot.
- Only change lanes when you can see both of the truck’s headlights in your rearview mirror.
- Avoid passing a truck on the right. The right side blind spot of a truck runs the length of the truck and extends out three lanes.
- Keep a safe distance from trucks. Allow 10 car lengths behind you when you get in front of a truck and stay back 20 to 25 car lengths when following a truck.
States Promote Safety
In August 2011, the Colorado State Patrol unveiled the “Ticketing Aggressive Cars and Trucks” (TACT) program designed to curb unsafe driving. With bumper stickers and billboards telling drivers to “Ride half-pipes, not tailpipes,” the Colorado State Patrol issued 600 tickets in August alone to overly aggressive car and truck drivers.
In Utah, the American Trucking Association, Utah Highway Patrol, AAA Utah and the Utah Trucking Association are teaming up to sponsor the Share the Road Safety Tour across the state. As reported by the Deseret News, veteran trucker Ted Cash participated in the tour by offering candid advice to listeners at a North Salt Lake truck stop. Cash has been a trucker for 33 years and has logged 2.5 million hours on the road without a collision.
As a small vehicle driver, it is important you do all you can to safely share the road with trucks. However, when trucks are improperly balanced or lacking proper safety equipment, are traveling in bad weather, or the driver is overly fatigued, you may become the victim of a collision. If you or a loved one has been injured in a trucking accident due to the fault of another, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact our caring attorneys today to schedule your free consultation.