Trucking Accident Evidences the Disproportionate Risk of Fatalities in Semi-Truck Collisions


September 17, 2013

Collisions involving semi-trucks tend to have devastating results for occupants of passenger vehicles involved in such accidents.  A tragic fatal crash last week provides recent evidence of the danger posed by tractor-trailers to the occupants of other vehicles.  Two people died and another person suffered serious injury in a collision between a semi-truck and a PT Cruiser in Gwinnett County according to an 11 Alive news report.  A law enforcement spokesman indicated that the passenger car was negotiating a turn when the semi-truck slammed into the vehicle.  The crash is still under investigation so it is unclear whether formal criminal charges will be filed.  Our Atlanta semi-truck accident attorneys at Montlick and Associates express our deepest condolences to the victims and their families.

The disparate consequences experienced by the vehicle occupants involved in this collision are typical for semi-truck accidents.  While the two front seat occupants in the PT Cruiser died and the back seat passenger suffered serious injuries requiring hospitalization, the truck driver suffered no injuries.  The difference in the severity of injuries suffered by the occupants of each vehicle is not surprising given the difference in weight and size between the vehicles.  While tractor-trailers can tip the scales at 40 tons, the average passenger car only weighs 1.5 tons.

A study conducted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) found that semi-trucks are involved in a relatively small proportion of motor vehicle accidents, but these collisions result in a disproportionate number of debilitating permanent injuries and traffic-related fatalities.  While semi-trucks are involved in only eight percent of motor vehicle collisions, semi-truck crashes account for twelve percent of all traffic-related fatalities.

The higher risk of serious injury and wrongful death associated with trucking accidents is a major impetus for the extensive regulation of the trucking industry.  When drivers with a commercial license and commercial carriers disregard trucking regulations designed for the safety of others on the roadway, fatal collisions are all too often the tragic result.  Some of the most common violations of trucking regulations that lead to semi-truck crashes include:

  • Lack of proper safety equipment
  • Violations of requirements regarding maintaining log books
  • Use of impairing prescription drug or illicit narcotics
  • Consumption of alcohol too close to a driving shift
  • Disregard of anti-fatigue rules (e.g. hours or service violations)
  •  Improper underside bar
  • Inadequate vehicle maintenance
  • Medically unfit drivers
  • Lack of valid commercial driver’s license

Montlick & Associates has been representing the victims of serious trucking accidents for 30 years.  Because trucking regulations and laws often play a critical role in establishing liability in Georgia trucking accidents, our experienced Atlanta semi-truck accident lawyers understand the actions that need to be taken to obtain and preserve evidence of such regulatory violations.  If you or a family member is injured in a semi-truck accident or a loved one dies, our Georgia truck accident attorneys at Montlick and Associates are available to provide effective legal representation to those throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. 

No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333).  You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Category: Auto Accidents

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Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.