Nationwide Increase in Truck Fatalities Hurts El Paso Road Users
The United States has experienced a surge in truck accidents in recent years. Often, these accidents disproportionately impact occupants of other vehicles as well as vulnerable road users such as bicyclists and pedestrians.
When an injury or death is caused by a truck accident, it is important to consult with an El Paso truck accident attorney. Victims and their families may have the right to be compensated for losses by a truck driver or the transportation company which employs a negligent truck driver.
Truck Accident Fatalities Are On the Rise
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that truck accident fatalities have been on the rise since 2009. By 2016, truck accident fatalities were 27 percent higher than the all-time low reached in 2009. The number of truck occupants who died in truck crashes was 47 percent higher in 2016 than 2009.
Why are truck accidents so fatal? IIHS notes that trucks can weigh 20 to 30 times as much as a smaller passenger vehicle. This weight both increases the braking time required to stop the truck and makes it more difficult to maneuver around obstructions in the roadway. Slippery road conditions, poor brake maintenance, and other factors can also make it more difficult for a truck to brake in time to avoid a collision. Trucks are also taller, which can increase the risk that a small vehicle will become trapped under the truck.
Real El Paso Truck Accidents
For many El Paso families, truck accident statistics are more than just abstract numbers. These families suffer very real and devastating losses when a truck accident causes fatal injuries. On a stretch of the Interstate 10 in El Paso, a recently engaged couple was killed when the semi truck they were in struck a piece of machinery in the roadway.
ABC 7 reports that a construction vehicle in the median had a conveyor belt which protruded into oncoming traffic. The belt struck the cab, which pushed the driver into the rear of the cab, ripped the sleeper berth off the cab and ejected the driver’s fiancée onto the road. The collision then caused a chain reaction which involved three other tractor trailers and an SUV. Both victims were truck drivers who reportedly loved their work. They had been approved for the purchase of a home and looked forward to their life together.
And near Pecos, an El Paso truck driver was killed in a head-on collision between two semi trucks. According to KFOX 14, police believe one of the drivers fell asleep and drifted into lanes of oncoming traffic, where another semi truck struck his vehicle head-on. The driver who struck the vehicle was treated for minor injuries and released from the hospital. The drowsy truck driver was killed by the impact of the collision.
When innocent victims are injured in truck accidents, it is important to hold the negligent parties responsible for their dangerous conduct. This could be a reckless truck driver, a careless construction crew, or even a transportation company that pressures its drivers to work dangerous hours. An El Paso truck accident attorney can help victims identify who was responsible for their accident.