The trucking industry is a crucial component to our nation’s economy, accounting for millions of dollars in revenue annually; however, our Oklahoma truck accident lawyers at Colbert Cooper Hill Attorneys explain it’s important to remember that the trucks and trailers used to transport goods across the United States can also pose a serious safety threat to others on the highway.
Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show an estimated 330,000 motor vehicle collisions involving commercial tractor-trailers in 2012 alone. Around 100,000 injuries and 3,921 fatalities were attributed to these accidents.
Physics plays a role in these collisions. A larger, heavier vehicle takes longer to slow down than a smaller, more compact vehicle. That’s why it takes a tractor-trailer the length of a football field to come to a stop when traveling at highway speeds. If you’ve ever come upon stopped traffic on the highway, you know you often don’t have that kind of time or space to stop, even in a car.
Despite size and weight being a serious concern when it comes to highway safety, debate is stirring as to whether U.S. officials should allow larger, heavier trucks on the road.
According to an article from FleetOwner, the U.S. Department of Transportation just released findings from a study that showed inconclusive results when it came to the safety of longer, heavier trucks. While some lauded the findings as a win for the trucking industry, safety advocates stated more time should be taken to further investigate the hazards larger vehicles could pose.
Safety should always be the number one priority on the road and our Oklahoma personal injury lawyers at Colbert Cooper Hill Attorneys are anxious to see the outcome of the debate taking place regarding the use of larger trucks to transport goods.
Numerous studies have shown speed to be a leading cause of crashes involving commercial tractor-trailers in the United States. The Oklahoma trucking accident lawyers with Colbert Cooper Hill Attorneys say these findings have prompted many organizations to call for better regulation of speeding for commercial trucks, yet little is being done to reduce the dangers of large big rigs barreling down the highway.
An article from ABC 4 News says the American Trucking Association (ATA) has taken steps towards better regulation of speed for tractor-trailers by petitioning the government to require every semi-truck to be equipped with a governor—a device that prevents a vehicle from exceeding a certain speed. No action has been taken toward the request though, as lawmakers are considering costs and potential alternatives to the rule.
Many believe that requiring governors on trucks could essentially level the transportation industry’s market by forcing all trucks to travel at the same pace. Still others believe the requirement would do little to curtail the problem, considering 70 percent of commercial tractor-trailers are already equipped with the device.
The ATA has also called for the federal government to reduce speed limits on most highways and interstates across the United States. Again, little to no action has been taken.
So, in the meantime, it’s important for motorists to be aware of the legal rights they should invoke in the event they’re involved in a crash with a tractor-trailer—and speaking with an attorney can help. At Colbert Cooper Hill Attorneys, our Oklahoma personal injury lawyers are standing by to assist you with your questions or concerns regarding your truck accident. Fell free to give us a call anytime at (877) 579-6800 to discuss your case.
A commercial tractor-trailer can be as long as four elephants, while also weighing as much as one of the massive creatures. That’s why it should come as no surprise the damage an accident involving one of these vehicles can do is extraordinary.
So who is responsible for paying for the costs of Oklahoma trucking accidents when they occur? Most companies carry insurance, but it may not be enough considering the state of Oklahoma only requires $750,000 in coverage.
Take the recent Oklahoma trucking accident that claimed the lives of four college softball players and left dozens of others injured. According to an article from CBS DFW News, the company who hired the truck driver that caused the wreck only carries $1 million in insurance, which surely won’t be enough to cover the expenses of all the accident victims and their families.
So what should you do in the event you’re harmed in an Oklahoma trucking accident that wasn’t your fault? Speaking with an attorney can be extremely beneficial. They will not only answer each of the questions you have regarding your case, but they can also help you with filing the necessary paperwork for such a claim.
At Colbert Cooper Hill Attorneys, our team of Oklahoma personal injury lawyers understands how trucking companies’ lack of insurance can affect accident victims, and we are hopeful the victims and families of the most recent crash get the compensation they’re entitled to.