Citing the rising death toll associated with accidents that involve passenger vehicles and large trucks, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recently made recommendations to promote safety and reduce the number of crashes on American roads.
The consequences of an accident between a semi-truck and a smaller vehicle can be horrific. With its speed and size, a large truck has the power to cause serious damage in a collision with an automobile, along with catastrophic or even fatal injuries.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the number of deaths due to large truck accidents rose between 2010 and 2012 in North Carolina.
To help prevent these types of accidents from occurring in North Carolina and across the nation, the NTSB recently made the following recommendations to the NHTSA to improve the safety of big rigs:
- Require new tractor-trailers over 26,000 pounds to be equipped with technology that enhances visibility of objects around and in the path of the trailer, including pedestrians, motorcycles, bicycles and other vehicles.
- Enact regulations that require new tractor-trailers over 10,000 pounds and all those over 26,000 pounds be equipped with effective side underride protection guards.
- Review and revise rear underride protections for vehicles over 10,000 pounds to protect passengers in vehicles that collide with trucks.
- Include additional information, such as the trailer vehicle identification number (VIN), when submitting data to the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) after a collision.
- Provide the motor vehicle license number in the next edition of the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria guidelines. Similarly, revise the guidelines to include the trailer VIN.
These recommendations, which call for better side and rear visibility and improved underride guards, have not yet been accepted or taken effect. In the meantime, truck drivers and other motorists should take extra care to look out for each other when sharing the road.
If you were hurt in a truck accident in North Carolina, consult an injury attorney to explore your legal options for obtaining rightful compensation for the damages you suffer.