Dangerous Trucking Industry Trends
Big Rigs Pose Roadway Risks
Massive 18-wheelers make many drivers in New Mexico uneasy. Trucks will continue to be on the road as they are the main form of transportation for goods across the nation. A recent report from the American Trucking Association claims that semi-trucks are continuing to dominate the American commercial trucking industry. The study, entitled ATA American Trucking Trends 2018, found that 18-wheelers carried 10.42 billion tons of freight. Another study, entitled the Risk for Truck Driving Accidents Are on the Rise 2016, found that 70% of the American shipping industry is composed of semi-trucks. The revenue from freight transportation in 2016 was valued at $676.2 billion.
As 18-wheelers transport more and more goods across the country, they pose a greater risk to other drivers. The steady growth of this industry shows that these issues may be getting worse.
More Trucks & Fewer Drivers Causes Increased Collisions
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration claims that large commercial vehicles were involved in nearly 475,000 collisions in 2016, causing 104,000 people to sustain injuries and 3,865 others to be killed. As commercial vehicle traffic increases, the potential for collisions with passenger vehicles also rises. Other trends that may comprise the safety of 18-wheelers include:
- Shortage of truck drivers. There are only around 50,000 truckers across the United States, so transportation companies are often forced to push their drivers and vehicles further than their limits. This increases the likelihood of drowsy driving accidents or crashes caused by poorly maintained vehicles. This issue is expected to worsen as the industry is predicted to hire around a million drivers over the next ten years, according to the ATA.
- Aging of trucker population. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that the average number of truck drivers is 55. Older drivers may have greater experience, but they are also more likely to suffer from health issues like sleep apnea, chronic pain which requires medication, and other conditions that can put other drivers at risk.
Those who have been injured in 18-wheeler crashes often experience not only pain and potentially life-changing injuries, but also financial strain, steep medical costs, and lost income. The best way for injured New Mexicans to protect their legal rights is by contacting an Albuquerque personal injury lawyer.
New Mexico Commercial Vehicle Crashes
New Mexico is an important state in the transport of goods and commodities across the country. The state contains many major interstates that are heavily trafficked by semi-trucks and other commercial transport vehicles. Nearly 1,400 accidents in New Mexico involve semis each year, accounting for 3% of all traffic accidents.
Occupants of passenger vehicles are extremely vulnerable when involved in a crash with a large 18-wheeler. The size and force of these vehicles can be devastating in the event of a collision, causing severe injuries. It is imperative that victims contact a qualified New Mexico semi accident attorney to protect their legal rights.
Will Ferguson & Associates understands that laws are created to help citizens when they are injured in a crash caused by a negligent driver. We have helped recover multi-million dollar settlements for our clients, and we can help you, too. Put us to work on your claim by giving us a call at 505-243-5566.