Being involved in any type of accident can be stressful and traumatic, but truck accidents tend to be particularly damaging. Truck accidents occur for a wide variety of reasons, and the severity of these accidents vary considerably. Keep reading to learn about the statistics of truck accidents.
Large Trucks Defined
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), large trucks are defined as trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) over 10,000 pounds.
According to the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS) maintained by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), large trucks are defined as vehicles designed, used, or maintained mainly for transporting property. In addition, large trucks have a GVWR or gross combination weight rating (GCWR) of over 10,000 pounds. The MCMIS definition also includes any vehicle that carries hazardous substances that mandates placarding, no matter the weight.
Statistics About Truck Accidents
These accidents include police-reported crashes that involve a vehicle traveling on a roadway in which at least one person loses their life within 30 days of the wreck. The person doesn’t have to die at the scene of the accident and these types of accidents are inclusive of any people involved, including non-motorists such as pedestrians and bicyclists.
According to the FMCSA, during 2017, the most recent year with data available, there were a total of 34,247 fatal accidents in the United States. Of that number, 4,455 involved at least one large truck or bus. That means these accidents made up 13% of the nation’s crashes.
In 2017, there were roughly 6,419,000 nonfatal accidents. About 507,000 of these accidents involved at least one large truck or bus, which accounts for 7.9% of the crashes.
These accidents include police-reported crashes that involve a vehicle traveling on a roadway in which no one lost their life but at least one person was reported to have one of the following:
- An incapacitating injury
- A visible but not incapacitating injury
- A possible, but not visible injury
- An injury in which the severity is unknown
In 2017, there were roughly 1,889,000 injury-sustaining accidents. About 116,000 of these accidents involved at least one large truck or bus, which accounts for 6.1% of the crashes.
Property Damage Only Crashes
These accidents include police-reported crashes that involve a vehicle traveling on a roadway in which no parties involved in the wreck endured any injuries.
In 2017, there were about 4,530,000 accidents involving only property damage. About 391,000 of these accidents involved at least one large truck or bus, which accounts for 8.6% of the crashes.
A nonmotorist is anyone who isn’t an occupant of a vehicle, including, but not limited to the following:
- Skateboard riders
- People riding on animals (such as horses)
- People riding in nonmotorized conveyances
In 2017, there were a total of 471 nonmotorist fatalities as a result of truck accidents, which made up about 9.9% of all vehicular fatalities. Of those deaths, 372 people were pedestrians, 76 people were pedalcyclists, and 23 died of either other or unknown causes.
Crashes Involving the Release of Hazardous Materials
These accidents include police-reported crashes that involve the release of hazardous materials onto the roadway.
In 2018, there were 2,077 truck accidents involving no cargo release and 470 accidents involving the release of cargo. In addition, there were 361 truck accidents in which the release of cargo is unknown. The following is a breakdown of the hazardous cargo that was released and the number of trucks that were involved in these types of wrecks:
Crashes in North Carolina
During 2017, there were a total of 119,716 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT) by large trucks in North Carolina. Of those millions of miles traveled, there were 172 fatalities due to trucking accidents, which means people died as a result of these accidents at a rate of 0.14% in the state.
If you’ve been involved in an accident with a large truck, our attorneys here at Benoit Law Firm, PLLC may be able to help. Our team is highly skilled in the area of truck accident personal injury law and we have helped many other people just like you obtain the justice they deserved. Let us see if we can help you, too. Don’t hesitate to reach out right away with any questions you may have.