The American Trucking Associations report that millions of commercial trucks are registered and in operation. These vehicles transport everything from food and furniture to animals and hazardous materials.
With so many of them on the road, it is crucial to know that semi-trucks pose a threat to other motorists if they crash. And sadly, people in passenger vehicles could be at a much higher risk of being severely injured in an accident if it involves a truck.
Motorists versus truckers
According to statistics from the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, nearly 70 percent of the people killed in truck crashes were people in other vehicles. On the other hand, truckers suffered fatal injuries in just 17 percent of crashes.
The risk of injuries to a car driver or passenger is higher than the risk to truck operators. The fact is that truck drivers are typically much higher off the ground than other motorists. And in general, cars and smaller vehicles have less structure and size protecting occupants.
Further, truckers can have the weight and force of their cargo behind them, making their rigs capable of doing extreme damage. Sometimes, truckers don’t even realize they’ve hit something.
Serious injuries from serious crashes
Even minor collisions can have major consequences for victims of a trucking accident. That said, many crashes are much more serious than a fender bender.
Trucks can roll over and jackknife; they can smash into other vehicles when drivers lose control. These massive rigs can completely crush a car, push it off the road and even drive over smaller vehicles. Not surprisingly, these situations can lead to fatal injuries. Those who do survive can experience:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Disfiguring scars
- Brain trauma
These and other devastating conditions can change a person’s life and cause immense emotional distress. Physical and mental damages often require extensive medical care and ongoing therapy for victims to recover.
Getting help after a trucking crash
Considering how catastrophic truck accident injuries can be, it can be imperative for victims of these crashes and their families to pursue the medical, financial and legal support they need to cope. With sufficient resources, parties can rebuild their lives and hold the appropriate parties accountable.