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The trucking industry in the United States is one of the largest industries in the world. Fleets of 18-wheelers and big rigs generate up to $671 billion worth of goods on an annual basis. 

These colossal vehicles are 80,000 pounds of speeding metal, posing a threat to unaware drivers and pedestrians alike. Because of this, truck accidents are the most deadly type of motor vehicle accident that one could be involved in.

The Houston truck accident attorneys of Lapeze & Johns want to spread awareness of how severe these types of accidents can be. Our attorneys have earned millions in compensation for clients injured in large truck accidents, and we want to help you get the restitution you deserve as well.

Shocking Truck Accident Trends 

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) compiled truck accident data and released its annual fact sheet for 2017 in March 2019 that included the following statistics:

  • There was a 9 percent increase from 2016 to 2017 in fatal crashes involving large trucks and buses with 4,889 reported cases.
  • From 2016 to 2017, the number of large truck crashes had a 5 percent increase from 102,000 to 107,000. 
  • More than 5,000 people died in truck accidents in 2017 with 372 reported pedestrians and 76 cyclists.
  • There was a 3 percent increase in the number of large trucks involved in property damage only crashes.
  • 4,600 (2.5 percent) of all large truck drivers in fatal crashes had a BAC of 0.08 percent or greater.

Other Notable Facts from previous reports include:

  • 12 percent of traffic fatalities came from Large trucks and buses in 2016.
  • Texas is among the 10 states with the highest average of fatal large truck accidents with a peak between 2014 and 2016.

What Makes a Truck Accident So Deadly?

A semi-truck carries a lot more mass, weighing at least 40 tons more in comparison to the average passenger vehicle. 

Because of this weight differentiation, the truck driver needs to take into consideration the proper amount of time it takes to stop the vehicle. A passenger car would need at least 306 feet to stop after braking, while a semi-truck would need an additional 219 feet (525 ft) to accurately make a stop if they are both traveling at the same speed (i.e. the faster the speed, the longer it takes to brake completely).

As for the truck drivers themselves, they spend long hours on the road and can drive up to eight continuous hours before even taking a break. Rest is important, especially for truck drivers. Not having a rested mindset to drive properly can result in devastating car accidents.

In some instances, truck drivers may receive compensation per distance traveled, encouraging them to drive a few extra miles for the sake of a bigger paycheck. It is also entirely possible that the trucking company failed to adequately train their own drivers in driving and maintaining their vehicles as well.

But the main factors highlighted within the FMCSA Report showed the top contributors to a truck accident were: 

  • 29 percent had problems with the vehicle’s brake system.
  • 23 percent were speeding.
  • 22 percent traveled through unfamiliar roads.
  • 20 percent had roadway issues.
  • 17 percent used prescription drugs on the job.
  • 14 percent had done inadequate surveillance.
  • 13 percent had driver fatigue.
  • 10 percent felt pressure from their company in order to meet deadlines.
  • 9 percent made an illegal maneuver.
  • 8 percent were distracted prior to an accident.
  • 5 percent drove aggressively. 

Trucking Accident Attorneys You Can Count On

If you or someone you love was involved in a vehicle accident that involved a commercially owned semi-truck and suffered severe injuries of any sort, contacting the Houston Truck Accident Attorneys of Lapeze & Johns is your best option at earning the compensation you need. 

Contact the Houston Car Accident Attorneys of Lapeze & Johns at (713) 766-4855 today for your free legal consultation.