15 Aug Truck Accidents
Trucking is a dangerous profession: although motor vehicle deaths decreased in 2008, more than 4,000 people in the US died that year in accidents involving large trucks, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board blames driver fatigue as a probable factor in 20-40 percent of truck accidents, even though in early 2003 the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) instituted new hours of service regulations to address trucker fatigue and drowsiness. But existing laws are not always enforced by trucking companies: for long-haul carriers, the longer truckers can drive without breaks can mean greater potential revenue for the company. With an ever increasing number of tractor trailers on US roads, driver fatigue is a public safety issue.
Proposed legislation will allow even larger and triple-rigged trucks on US highways, even though driving rigs such as tankers and flatbeds are probably one of the most dangerous major occupations in the country: about 55 percent of all class 8 (semis) driver fatalities occur in rollover accidents (big rigs roll easily) and another 10 percent happen in fuel oil fires.