Truckers in North Carolina may already know that there are more and more crashes involving cars and trucks than in previous years. Florida, for example, has seen a jump from 23,515 such accidents in 2014 to 32,513 in 2018. The Florida DoT has said that speeding is the leading driver-related factor in these crashes.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, about 4,000 out of the more than 34,400 fatal vehicle crashes that occur every year in the U.S. involve at least one large truck or bus. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration says that 72 percent of fatalities in truck crashes are actually the occupants of the passenger vehicles.
In answer to this deadly trend, many companies are turning to safety tech. Maverick Transportation, a mid-sized trucking company in the Midwest, has installed a wide range of devices on its fleet of 1,800 trucks, including collision avoidance systems, lane departure warning, cameras and roll stability control. The results have been impressive: last year, the company only had one accident that was reportable to the DoT.
Maverick also touts the benefits of speed limiters, setting these at 65 mph for all its trucks. NHTSA did propose a federal rule mandating their use on all heavy-duty trucks, but the proposal failed.
In the effort to make up for lost miles, many truckers speed, raising their risk for a commercial truck accident. Victims of such accidents may be eligible for compensation so long as they themselves were not partially to blame. Under North Carolina’s rule of contributory negligence, plaintiffs who are even one percent at fault will be barred from recovery. This is why getting a case evaluation might be a good idea. If the grounds for a claim are good, the lawyer may try for a settlement out of court.