Large Truck Accident Statistics

The United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) and other administrations report that a crash is labeled a truck accident if the vehicle weighs more than 10,000 pounds. Truck accidents usually involve smaller vehicles that were crashed into by 18-wheelers, big rigs, semi-trucks, or tractor trailers. Because of these types of truck accidents, there is, regrettably, a great amount of people who have been seriously injured or killed.

Fatality Statistics

  • In the United States alone, there are approximately 500,000 truck accidents that occur yearly
  • Of the 500,000 trucking accidents, the number of fatalities that occurs is nearly 5,000 or approximately 0.01%
  • About 1 out of 8 fatal auto accidents involves trucks

Injured Party Statistics

Because large trucks are so massive and weigh thousands of pounds, truck drivers do not usually become injured and rarely die in a truck accident, whereas occupants of a smaller vehicle usually acquire serious or fatal injuries.This is especially apparent as:

  • 98% of fatalities in truck accidents are the occupants of smaller vehicles, including the driver and any passengers
  • Only 2% of fatalities in truck accidents are truck drivers

Commercial Truck Accidents Fatalities Statistics

The amount of commercial trucks on the road is increasing.Regrettably, this means the number of truck crashes and deaths each year are growing as well.According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA):

  • In 1975, the number of registered trucks was 5,362,369, and the number of fatalities that year was 3,722.
  • In 2005, the number of registered trucks was 8,481,999, and the number of fatalities that occurred that year was 4,533.

These statistics obviously show how the number of registered large trucks correlates to the number of fatalities for that year.

Time, Day, and Location Statistics

The percentage of large truck accident fatalities differs on the time of day, the day of the week, and the location in which the accident occurred.The U.S. Department of Transportation reported that:

  • 34% of fatal truck accidents occurred at night and that 66% occurred during the day
  • 22% of truck accident fatalities occurred during the weekdays and 78% occurred during the weekends
  • Approximately 32% take place in cities and 68% take place in rural and suburban areas.

Obviously the time, day, and location play an important role in fatal accidents.

Causality Statistics

Although it is assumed that drunken driving causes most truck accidents, this is not the case. As of 2003:

  • Drunk driving only accounts for 1% of truck accident fatalities
  • 30% of fatal truck accidents happen because the truck driver is fatigued

Another such myth is that truck drivers are at fault for fatal truck crashes a majority of the time.

  • 38.6% of fatal accidents occur because of truck driver related aspects
  • 61.4% of fatal accidents occur because of non-truck driver related aspects

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