Insurance companies may play a critical role in the ongoing campaign to make America's roads safer - especially when it comes to deadly truck accidents.
On June 28, global commercial vehicle parts suppliers WABCO and ZF revealed the new Evasive Maneuver Assist system, which does more than activate the braking systems in tractor-trailer trucks. North Carolina motorists might be thrilled to hear that it autonomously steers the trucks around stopped vehicles when it detects that just braking is insufficient to prevent an accident.
North Carolina motorists who have been stuck in traffic because of a truck accident up the road may appreciate that the number of trucks involved in fatal accidents around the country went down by 5 percent in 2014 from the previous year. The statistic was part of a report published annually by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, although the data did not apportion blame.
Authorities in North Carolina have reported that an accident involving a semi-tractor trailer on Interstate 85 claimed the lives of two people during the early morning hours of April 6. The accident occurred in the vicinity of Sugar Creek Road at approximately 4:30 a.m. While the cause of the crash was not immediately clear, investigators have revealed that the Arizona-based operator of the truck involved has been cited for unsafe driving by the FMCSA 4,098 times during the last two years.
A weary truck driver has the potential to wreak havoc on a North Carolina highway. Accidents caused by fatigued drivers can be some of the most serious because there is little or no time to respond or correct course for a driver who has dozed off. The size of a semi truck is another serious matter, especially when traveling at a high rate of speed. Serious incidents have caused officials to look for better ways to moderate driver rest periods, but some of these efforts can be flawed.
Steps designed to ensure that the drivers of buses and trucks are qualified and adequately trained could save many lives, and road users in North Carolina rely on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to establish the amount and type of training that must be completed before a commercial driver's license can be awarded. Human factors play a role in most fatal motor vehicle accidents, and the FMCSA announced a proposal on March 4 that would establish a new curriculum for novice commercial vehicle drivers.
Commercial truck accidents are different from accidents between two cars. Not only do the people involved in truck accidents tend to suffer more serious injuries but these accidents are also treated differently under the law. That is because there are many rules and regulations that trucking companies and truck drivers must adhere to.
Finding even a little bit of humor in truck accidents is not something that happens very often. Those with experience in dealing with trying to recover compensation for victims who have suffered catastrophic injuries tend to be focused most on protecting victims' rights and obtaining the compensation that's deserved.
It may well be said that, as a group, truck drivers are among the safest on the roads of North Carolina. They and their employers are expected to meet a higher legal standard of training and oversight than average drivers do.
A tractor-trailer full of cabbages overturned on a highway in the Northeast late last month. No one was seriously hurt, thank goodness. But the matter opened the door to some jokes about how a crash with a truck carrying mayonnaise could have made for a record-setting cole slaw.