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Are the More Truck Accidents in the Summer?

By Butler Prather LLP on July 22, 2019

When the weather heats up, so does the number of traffic crashes on the roadways. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) tells us that the peak months for car accidents in the US are August and September. In Georgia, we see traffic begin to pick up right as schools let out. Not only do we have our own tourist destinations, but plenty of people are also traveling through heading to Florida and other popular spots. You will also notice that there are more commercial truck activities on our roadways. Does this mean there are more truck accidents during the summer?

Are the More Truck Accidents in the Summer

What do we know about large truck crashes?

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, there were 4,761 fatalities and 148,000 injures due to large truck crashes in the US in 2017.

There are several reasons that these crashes are more common in the summer months.

  • More trucks – There are going to be more trucks on the road during the summer. More people buy things during the summer, and those goods have to get delivered. Most of the things we buy at the store each day are delivered by semi-truck.
  • Heavier traffic – It is not just more trucks on the roadways. There are simply more vehicles in general traveling through Georgia during the summer months.
  • Road construction – Many highways in Georgia undergo construction during the summer. This can create hazards and added traffic. When truckers and other drivers are not expecting road or traffic changes, serious accidents can occur.
  • Longer hours – Truck drivers are operating more during the summer. This is not an easy job. Despite strict regulations, truck drivers do not always stop and rest or sleep when they are supposed to. This can lead to fatigued or distracted driving.
  • Hot weather – Hotter weather can cause major problems for a truck. The heat can increase tire pressures, resulting in tire blowouts. These tires can go flying and strike other vehicles, causing an accident. Tire blowouts can also cause the truck driver to lose control of the vehicle.

What kind of injuries are common in truck crashes?

A fully loaded commercial semi-truck can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. Compare that to the average 4,000-pound passenger vehicles, and you can see why a truck crash can be so devastating. Large truck crashes can affect dozens of vehicles on the roadways. Some of the common injuries associated with the large truck crashes include:

  • Spinal cord injuries (possible paralysis)
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Concussions
  • Bone fractures
  • Loss of or damage to bodily organ
  • Dismemberment or amputation
  • Other injuries that inhibit a person’s daily activities
  • Significant disfigurement
  • Chemical exposure (if the truck is carrying hazardous materials)

It is vital that drivers be aware of their surroundings when riding around larger trucks. Be on the lookout for all large trucks, not just tractor-trailers. All of the issues mentioned above matter for dump trucks, garbage, trucks, takers, moving trucks, and more. Passenger vehicle drivers should give trucks plenty of space on the roadways.

Truck drivers and truck companies should always be in compliance with the laws and regulations regarding safe operation. This means drivers taking required rests and not carrying more than allowed by law. Companies should always regularly inspect and maintain each vehicle in their fleet to prevent the possibility of vehicle failure.

Posted in: Truck Accidents

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