Home>>Truck Blog

Commercial Truck Insurance Blog for Truckers Only

  • Facts about Truck Accidents

    Most people are aware that many truck accidents take place every year in the United States, which causes injury to thousands of people, in addition to causing many deaths. But do you know the actual numbers? Here are some truck accident statistics, as released by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and compiled by many agencies and sources.
    A trucking accident occurs when large trailers (10,000+ lbs.) collide with other vehicles or pedestrians. Around 500,000 trucking accidents occur every year in the United States. Of these, approximately 5,000 trucking accidents result in fatalities. In fact, one out of every eight traffic fatalities involves a trucking collision.
    Trucking revenues totaled $610 billion last year and revenues are estimated to nearly double by 2015. While commercial trucking growth is good news for the trucking companies and the economy, it is bad news for the cars, vans and SUVs that share the road with these potentially lethal giants. In tractor trailer accidents, 98% of fatalities occur to the individuals in the passenger vehicles.
    In 2008, the preliminary national crash facts were as follows:
    123,918 large trucks and 13,263 buses involved in non-fatal crashes
    49,084 large trucks and 7,123 buses involved in injury crashes
    73,047 injuries in crashes involving large trucks and 16,760 injuries in crashes involving buses
    74,834 large trucks and 6,140 buses involved in tow-away crashes
    2,609 large trucks and 11 buses involved in hazmat (HM) placard crashes
    Sixty-eight percent of all fatal truck accidents happened not in cities, but in rural regions. As high as 66% of all fatal truck accidents occurred in the day as opposed to night; weekends accounted for 78% of the total fatal truck accidents that took place in 2003.
    Statistics of Fatal Truck Accidents and Drivers' Negligence
    Accidents occurring while a driver is under the influence or while intoxicated are at an epidemic level in the United States. Truck accidents are not exempt from this. Driving under the influence (DUI) is regarded as one of the leading causes of fatal truck accidents today.
    Statewide, the numbers are sometimes staggering. For instance, the following are a list of Oregon truck accident statistics for 2004:
    In 2004, 1159 truck accidents took place in Oregon, which resulted in fatalities, injuries, or damage to other vehicles.
    This figure is 8.01% higher than in 2003.
    621 truck accidents were the fault of the truck, with a staggering 596 of these due to a fault on the part of the truck driver.
    13 was the maximum number of truck accidents in one day, with 26 being the highest number of truck accidents by one trucking company.
    Five hundred forty-five people were injured in the above 1,159 truck accidents, with six of the truck drivers being killed.
    3.02% of the total truck accidents involved trucks that were transporting hazardous supplies.
    Over the years, the number of trucks on U.S. roads has increased to a great extent, but statistics show that the number of deaths due to truck accidents has remained more or less the same – about 5,000 deaths each year. This number is still too high, of course, and efforts must be taken to reduce fatalities as a result of truck accidents.
    Truck drivers and trucking companies should ensure well maintained trucks and disciplined driving. Owners of small vehicles and passenger cars can also learn the techniques of defensive driving in relation to trucks. With combined efforts, these high statistics can be reduced.
    Truck drivers can slow down in work zones, keep their distance, be aware of their "no-zones", maintain their vehicles and drive defensively. Drivers of passenger cars can avoid accidents with trucks by avoiding the blind spots around trucks. In addition, these drivers should avoid passing a truck on the right when the truck is turning right. Finally, observe a truck's turn signals, you appropriate passing procedures, do not cut trucks off, and report dangerous driving to the proper authorities.

    The average cost of a  commercial truck accident  is about $59,150
    ·         Nearly 90 percent of commercial truck accidents are caused or worsened by some sort of human error—either on behalf of a truck driver, other drivers, other vehicle passengers, cyclists or pedestrians
    ·         About 75 percent of commercial truck accidents are caused by drivers of other smaller passenger vehicles, rather than the truck driver
    ·         Driver fatigue is responsible for roughly 30 percent of all commercial truck accidents
  • Truck Facts

    OOf the 15.5 million trucks in the U.S., nearly 13 percent are semis, big rigs18 wheelers and tractor trailers
    ·         About 98 percent of all semi accidents result in at least one fatality
    ·         Fatal tractor trailer accidents cost Americans more than $20 billion each year, $13.1 billion of which is the cost associated with loss of quality of life
    ·         For every 100 million miles driven on U.S. road ways, there are 2.3 deaths and 60.5 injuries caused by big rigs

    Todd E. Smith, President          

    Thomas Wilson Group, LLC  
    5214 Maryland Way, Ste. 303
    Brentwood, Tennessee 37027

  • E-logs make FMCSA's wish list for year's end

    FMCSA Acting Administrator Scott Darling today laid out the top five priorities he would like to see carried out by year’s end. Featuring prominently is a final rule that would make electronic logging devices mandatory.

    Darling says the ELD rule is being designed, as per a requirement, to protect commercial drivers from harassment.

    Darling issued a letter on Tuesday, Sept. 15, to reiterate the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s commitment to saving lives and to update the agency’s 1,100 employees on the top five priorities.

    The FMCSA’s top five priorities, in the agency’s words, are:

    Safety Fitness DeterminationFMCSA is in the final stages of publishing a proposed rule that would increase the use of inspection data in making Safety Fitness Determinations for motor carriers. This rule would propose important changes to the agency’s process for assessing the safety performance of truck and bus companies, focusing on incorporating current on-road safety performance data (i.e., roadside inspection and crash data), and evaluating carriers based on their own performance. We will be seeking public input on the proposed rule and look forward to hearing your views as we develop a final rule.

    Inspection Modernization
    FMCSA launched a new version of our inspection software program – Aspen 3.0. It features a new look and feel and enhanced capabilities. Many of the functions needed at roadside are now integrated into the Aspen system without requiring external software. Law enforcement personnel are also able to obtain direct access to out-of-service notices. We launched a series of training webinars this month that go into great detail on the many improvements.

    Unified Registration System
    FMCSA will implement a new, revamped system designed to improve the accuracy and timeliness of the information in our database of registered motor carriers based on our 2013 Final Rule. URS will streamline manual processes and combine several forms that regulated entities are required to submit into one unified registration – the electronic “smart form.” It is important that we get this right. As such, we will move forward with a new phased implementation that will ensure a successful launch. A Federal Register notice will be published in October that will provide details on the updated implementation timeline.

    Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) Phase III In preparation for a successful launch of the final two CSA interventions – offsite investigations and cooperative safety plans – we are lining up the necessary training for Federal and State investigators and outreach to the industry. Two important things to note:
    ·         The agency is also moving forward on a new type of investigation – the crash BASIC investigation – that focuses on identifying trends in carrier crash behaviors. 
    ·         FMCSA will be fine-tuning the SMS algorithm to better identify carriers for investigation so that we can intervene more quickly with those found to be at greatest risk. A second Federal Register notice announcing the preview of the changes will be published in the coming months.

    Electronic Logging Devices (ELD)A final rule on ELDs is being reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget and is scheduled to be out later this year. Although we cannot discuss the provisions of a final rule before it is made public, I can say that the rule is designed to benefit everyone by: 
    ·         By improving hours of service (HOS) compliance, which we estimate will prevent about 20 fatalities and over 400 injuries each year;
    ·         Helping businesses cut paperwork and save money;
    ·         Protecting drivers from harassment; and
    ·         Making it easier for law enforcement and safety inspectors to review driver HOS records.