Many Motor Vehicle Fatalities Involve Collisions with Commercial Vehicles

Recent data suggests that accidents concerning 18-wheelers and other commercial vehicles are much more common than one might suspect. Each year, more than 4,000 people the die in collisions involving trucks. That’s quite significant since these trucks make up less than four percent of all passenger vehicles on U.S. roads, yet 12 percent of all motor vehicle fatalities involve commercial vehicles.

 Recently in North Carolina a tractor-trailer rear-ended a school bus, sending 13 people to hospitals. Fortunately, there were no fatalities in this accident. It was reported that the collision occurred about 7 a.m. near the highway’s intersection when the 18-wheeler’s driver struck the backend of the bus, which was slowing down to pick up a student. The school bus was on its way to a local school with 12 students on board at the time of the collision.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) provides regulations for the safe operation of commercial vehicles. It’s the responsibility of the commercial motor carrier to ensure that both the vehicles and the drivers it employs meet all federal regulations to safeguard. This is to protect both a carrier’s employees and the general driving public. Issues that are often involved in commercial vehicle litigation include:

  • Truck driver fatigue and Hours of Service (HOS) regulations;
  • Truck driver distraction due to electronic devices;
  • Rapid Response Teams and the importance of prompt investigation;
  • Importance of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations in Commercial Trucking cases; and
  • Statutory background of federal trucking safety laws.

Sadly, the trucking industry continues to fall short of safety regulations, and minimum insurance requirements for commercial trucks have a reputation of inadequately compensating those who have been seriously injured in a deadly collision.  For more information about personal injury claims involving heavy trucks, log truck, 18-wheelers and other commercial vehicles, contact Boyd B. Newton at 404-593-2630 or by e-mail at