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Exploring the Deadliest Types of Semi-Truck Accidents: A Call for Increased Safety

The open road, dotted with trucks traversing the landscape, is a familiar sight. However, beneath the open road’s presence lies an undeniable reality – semi-truck accidents.

Despite strict regulations and technological advancements, these accidents persist, highlighting the urgent need for increased safety awareness. There have also been a high number of deaths that have occurred over the years due to these semi-truck accidents.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, there were 1,063 fatalities from large truck and bus accidents across the United States in 2022. In addition, the state with the highest number of fatalities is Texas, with 144 in total.

So how do these deadly semi truck accidents happen on the road? Let’s find out.

1. Frontal or Head-On Collisions

Frontal or head-on collisions involving semi-trucks are among the most lethal types of accidents.

These types of collisions happen when the front end of a semi truck hits the front of a motor vehicle traveling in the opposite direction. For example, if a truck driver is on the highway and loses control and ends up driving on the other side of the road hitting another vehicle head-on, that could be considered a frontal collision.

The sheer weight and momentum of these semi trucks often lead to severe injuries and fatalities, propelled by the force of the impact.

2. Jackknife Accidents

Jackknife accidents rank high on the list of dangerous semi-truck mishaps.

These accidents occur when a semi-truck’s trailer swings out, forming a 90-degree angle on the road. They also frequently cause multi-vehicle pile-ups, as other vehicles become ensnared in the path of the skidding trailer.

Jackknife accidents usually occur due to various conditions, such as hot weather, icy roads, or manufacturing defects with the semi truck. The number of jackknife accidents and the deadly nature of them also depend on where the truck is, along with the other vehicles that are also on the road at the same time.

3. Rollover Incidents

Rollover accidents are a major concern due to semi-trucks’ top-heavy design.

What happens is that the semi-truck’s center of gravity shifts during sharp turns, uneven road surfaces, or excessive speeds, leading to a rollover. Some common causes include sharp turns, a heavy load on the trailer, along with truck driver fatigue.

These incidents can be catastrophic, with overturned trucks potentially crushing nearby vehicles, damaging property, and causing severe injuries or fatalities.

4. Underride Collisions

Underride collisions are insidious due to their hidden nature. They occur when smaller vehicles become trapped beneath a semi-truck’s trailer during an accident.

The impact on the smaller vehicle is devastating, as it bears the brunt of the force. These accidents often result in decapitation, catastrophic injuries, and fatalities.

A Call for Collective Responsibility

The deadliest types of semi-truck accidents serve as poignant reminders of the potential risks on the road. Although there are still regulations in place, these accidents can also happen due to the negligence of large trucking companies and their drivers as well.

As stated from The Law Offices of Maloney and Campolo, “negligent hiring in the trucking industry and incomplete training practices are also common reasons to hold a trucking company liable for a wreck resulting in personal injuries.”

While safety regulations and technology advancements have made strides, a collective effort is needed. Truck drivers, companies, and regulatory bodies must work together to mitigate these dangers.

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