One small decision can mean big trouble

You see them anytime you drive on the highway, and you may see them for hours at a time if you’re on a road trip. Large trucks are so important, allowing companies to transport goods, services, and even food.

And yet, these same large trucks can be so dangerous as well. According to CNBC, more than 100,000 people are injured every year in truck crashes, and fatal truck accidents are happening nearly 11 times every day.

FMCSA’s truck accident causation study

In 2010, there were 2,715 fatal traffic accidents in California. Of those fatal accidents, 235 involved commercial trucks. In California, nearly 9% of all fatal highway crashed involved at least one large and/or commercial truck. These statistics place California as the second most dangerous state to drive in.

On a national scale, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration conducted a study from April 2001 to December 2003 concerning the causation of large truck crashes. They found that, out of the 141,000 total accidents involving large trucks, 78,000 of them were due to critical reason. They categorized critical reason into four categories:

  • Non-performance, meaning the driver fell asleep, had a heart attack or seizure, or was physically impaired. Non-performance is claimed to have caused 9,000, or 12%, of the sampled truck accidents.
  • Recognition, meaning the driver was inattentive, distracted, or failed to observe the situation accurately. Recognition is claimed to have caused 22,000, or 28%, of the sampled truck accidents.
  • Decision, meaning the driver was driving too fast for conditions, followed other vehicles too closely, or misjudged the speed of other vehicles. Decision is claimed to have caused 30,000, or 38%, of the sampled truck accidents.
  • Performance, meaning the driver panicked, overcompensated, or exercised poor directional control. Performance is claimed to have caused 7,000, or 9%, of the sampled truck accidents.

In a moment of misjudgment, poor decision making, lack of attention, or panic, a truck can cause an accident involving many cars and resulting in serious injuries or fatalities.

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Tangling with a semi, or tractor-trailer, on the road can have catastrophic consequences for you. Let Holland & Holland find the right way for you to overcome your injuries.
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Truck Accident Causation Study

In the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration causation study, they found that the most common causes for accidents where the truck driver was at fault are extremely similar to the most common causes for accidents where the passenger car driver was at fault. Those accident causes include:

  • Interruption of the traffic flow
  • Unfamiliarity with the roadway
  • Inadequate surveillance
  • Driving too fast for conditions
  • Illegal maneuver
  • Inattention
  • Fatigue
  • Illness
  • False assumption of other road user’s actions
  • Distraction by object or person inside the vehicle

In can happen all too quickly: a car driver or a truck driver can be unsure, tired, inattentive, sick, speeding, or distracted, and a serious accident can occur as a result.

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La Habra, CA truck accident lawyers with answers

As with any accident, being involved in a truck accident can be a traumatizing experience and should be handled with expert care. The attorneys at Holland & Holland can work with you on your case and help you make clear, informed decisions. Contact us today for a consultation.