Trucking Industry Push for Bigger Heavier Trucks Means More Trucking Accident Fatalities


October 09, 2010

One of the most significant risks that are created by large tractor-trailers is the danger their weight and size pose. A fully loaded commercial big rig can exceed 80,000 pounds, which makes every trucking accident a potentially fatal collision. Small passenger vehicles have little chance when subjected to the force and impact of a semi-truck. Despite this inherent risk, the trucking industry is often found to be overloading trucks, which magnifies the risk by making trucks more difficult to control and more dangerous when a driver loses control.

Most truck drivers are well trained, careful and professional. However, the trucking industry is currently pushing for new regulations that would allow trucks to be larger. This is a bad idea that poses serious risk to other motorists on the road. At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, we have been representing Georgia residents who have been seriously injured in Atlanta and Georgia truck accidents for over 25 years.

The trucking industry has an enormously powerful lobby with over 500,000 trucking companies and generates revenues in excess of $255.5 billion per year. The trucking industry is so large that it dominates the roads, logging over 432 billion miles per year, and encompasses over 2 million tractor- trailer trucks. With the hope of increasing profits, trucking companies and truck drivers are pushing for new regulations that will permit tractor trailer trucks to become 20% heavier, meaning that the heaviest trucks will go from 80,000 pounds to 96,000 pounds. The trucking industry hopes to increase revenue because bigger trucks mean fewer trips and less money spent on operator wages and fuel.

This increase in the size of trucks only exacerbates the unique dangers already posed to other motorists by big rig commercial trucks. Blind spots around commercial trucks commonly referred to as "no zones," would increase making visibility even more of an issue for truck drivers. Although drivers have special mirrors to help with these blind spots, driver fatigue can lead to trucking accidents where the driver fails to carefully check all of the blind spots in mirrors and moves into the path of a passenger vehicle or otherwise makes an unsafe lane change.

The proposed changes would increase risks posed by commercial trucks because of the substantial weight increase that would result from the proposed changes. The massive weight of tractor trailers makes them more difficult to stop and maneuver. A 20% increase in size, and the corresponding weight increase, threatens to magnify these problems and may lead to a higher volume of accidents. Even more worrisome, the increased weight makes the already awe-inspiring weight disparity between big rig trucks and passenger vehicles even greater. This means that the increase in vehicle size not only means a likelihood of an increased number of trucking accidents, but accidents that are far more serious, resulting in catastrophic injuries including traumatic brain injuries, paralysis and fatalities.

Trucking accidents are already common with over 500,000 trucking accidents each year, often resulting in serious injuries and over 5,000 fatalities per year. Trucking accidents account for 12% of all fatality accidents in the U.S. with someone in the passenger vehicle being the person killed an alarming 98% of the time. Bigger and heavier commercial trucks are a bad idea that hopefully will be rejected.

At Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, our Georgia commercial truck accident attorneys have been representing those injured in tractor trailer accidents for over quarter of a century. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured or killed in a trucking accident, you should contact a qualified experienced Georgia trucking accident lawyer as soon as possible to protect your rights. We are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia including, but not limited to, Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Dalton, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. Call us today for your free consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333), or visit us on the web at www.montlick.com. No matter where you are, we are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you.

Category: Truck Accidents

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