Oklahoma Trucking Accidents Affect Everyone

Noble McIntyre on August 18, 2015

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You could be one of the lucky ones who has never been in an Oklahoma trucking accident, but there is a chance that one could affect you at some time in your life. Even if you’ve never driven a truck (or never plan to), an accident can injure anyone – a trucker, another motorist, a family member or friend, or even a pedestrian.

We’ve talked before about what causes an Oklahoma trucking accident, specifically related to oil field injuries because they are so common in Oklahoma. But, there are lots of truckers on the roads in lots of different industries, so it’s important that everyone follow a few tips to stay safe.

How many people are killed in truck accidents?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (a division of the Federal Department of Transportation) has done research to determine what are the major causes of trucking accidents. According to their 2015 Pocket Guide to Large Truck and Bus Statistics, the numbers of large truck crashes have been steadily increasing in recent years. In 2013, there were 327,000 large truck crashes on U.S. highways. Of those, 3,541 had a fatality and 69,000 involved injuries. Oklahoma was 11th in the nation for the number of large trucks involved in fatal crashes in 2013, with 116 fatal crashes. But, it’s not just the truckers who suffer. In 2013, 1,438 passenger car occupants, 16 bus passengers, 338 pedestrians, 78 bicyclists, 23 other non-motorists and 204 motorcyclists were victims of fatal large truck crashes nationwide.

How can we prevent truck accidents?

According to the Department of Transportation, the top 10 reasons for truck accidents are:

  • Driver failing to obey traffic laws or road rules
  • Speeding
  • Underinflated tires
  • Cargo that shifts or is incorrectly loaded on a commercial truck
  • Driver fatigue (i.e. driving without proper breaks for sleeping)
  • Driver substance abuse
  • Improper braking or deceleration
  • Poor truck maintenance
  • Blind spots (not seeing other vehicles on the road
  • Careless or reckless driving

While trucking accidents are not always the driver or the company’s fault, they are often preventable. Of the top ten reasons above, all appear avoidable except for perhaps blind spots.

How can we help prevent truck accident injuries?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommendations for both truck drivers and others to prevent truck accident injuries:

  • A truck driver (like any motorist or passenger) should always wear a seat belt. The CDC estimates that 14 percent of truck drivers do not use one on every trip.
  • The drivers who reported not wearing seat belts also tended to have other unsafe driving behavior like speeding and other moving violations. Many of those drivers’ employers did not have a written workplace safety protocol. Every employer should properly train truck drivers and maintenance employees to travel safely and carefully.
  • Employers should establish and enforce safety policies that include seat belt use, and ban texting while driving and the use of any handheld mobile device while on the road.

At McIntyre Law, P.C., we’ve seen victims of truck accidents that come in all shapes and sizes. If you’ve been a victim of an Oklahoma trucking accident, or if you have a friend or loved one who has, contact us today for a free consultation. Our experts can work with you on every phase of the process, from accident reconstruction and insurance advice to being compensated for medical and other expenses. We want to help you get what you need to be happy and healthy—even after an accident.

Noble McIntyre

Noble McIntyre is the senior partner and owner of McIntyre Law who focuses primarily on drug litigation and catastrophic injury cases. He is currently representing clients injured by the drugs Paxil, Levaquin and testosterone therapy drugs and by clients affected by oil field injuries. His goal has and continues to be to work diligently on behalf of his clients to achieve the highest and best result for his clients’ injuries while maintaining professionalism and abiding by all ethical standards of his profession. Read more about Noble McIntyre.

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