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Holding truckers accountable for deadly, injurious accidents

New Jersey didn’t make the top ten for the list of states where deadly truck accidents are most likely to occur. That report, which looked at crash data from 2012, found that the state of North Dakota was the most likely state for fatal truck crashes to happen. Following North Dakota were a number of more rural states, including Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, West Virginia and Indiana.

Even though the state of Texas had the greatest overall number of fatal truck crashes, it came in behind several other states with less overall vehicle population, which was also factored into the report. One interesting thing the study pointed out was that almost 75 percent of those killed in large truck accidents were occupying other vehicles. Only 18 percent of those killed were large truck drivers. Obviously, those who are most at risk in these accidents are not truck drivers but those travelling in smaller, lighter vehicles. 

Truck accidents, of course, can occur for any number of reasons, but federal safety regulations have targeted driver fatigue in a particular way. Because truckers spend long hours on the road, often without adequate risk, they are more prone to falling asleep behind the wheel than the average driver.

Federal hours-of-service rules limit the amount of time truckers can spend behind the wheel and require truckers to take breaks, but companies and truckers don’t always follow those rules the way they should. When a trucker or trucking company fails to follow these rules and causes death or injury to another motorist as a result, they need to be held accountable. 

Source: Cars.com, “Where Are You Most Likely to Die in a Truck Crash?,” Matt Schmitz, March 3, 2014.  

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