Semi-Truck Accident Statistics

If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a semi-truck accident, you are not alone. Each year, there are tens of thousands of large truck accidents across the United States, and these accidents leave hundreds of thousands of victims injured will also accounting for thousands of deaths.

Each year, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) publish updated statistics on semi-truck and other commercial vehicle accidents nationwide. Here are some of the key numbers from 2015:

FMCSA Truck and Bus Accident Statistics

The FMCSA’s annual “Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts” report contains 40 years’ worth of accident data for collisions involving semi-trucks, tractor trailers, 18 wheelers, and other commercial vehicles. According to the FMCSA’s 2015 preliminary report:

  • 2015 saw an eight percent increase in fatal commercial truck and bus crashes as compared to 2014. The total of 4,311 fatalities in 2015 represents a six-year high, but is still well below the peak of 5,231 fatal truck and bus accidents in 2005.
  • While injury crashes declined by a third from 2005 to 2009, they increased by nearly two thirds from 2009 to 2015.
  • The substantial majority of people who die in truck and bus accidents are pedestrians and occupants of non-commercial vehicles. Of the 4,311 people who died in 2015, 3,595 fell into these categories.
  • The total number of injury crashes in 2015 increased to 97,000, and the total number of injury victims rose to 138,000. This means that approximately half of all semi-truck and other commercial vehicle crashes have multiple victims.

IIHS Large Truck Accident Statistics

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s truck accident data closely mirror the figures published by the FMCSA. However, IIHS has published some additional interesting statistics as well. For example:

  • In 2015, nearly 70 percent of all semi-truck and other commercial truck accident victims were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles, while 15 percent were pedestrians, bicyclists or motorcycle riders.
  • While truck driver fatalities have dropped by 56 percent since 1979, the fatality rate for occupants of passenger vehicles has only dropped by 37 percent. This means that commercial truck accidents continue to be particularly dangerous for drivers and passengers in cars, vans, pickup trucks and SUVs.
  • Large truck crashes accounted for 11 percent of all roadway deaths in 2015.
  • 75 percent of truck accident fatalities in 2015 involved tractor trailers (including semi-trucks). Just 25 percent involved single-unit trucks.

If there is one fact to take away from these statistics, it is this: Semi trucks present severe risks for pedestrians, motorcyclists and occupants of passenger vehicles. When these risks lead to injuries or death, the victims deserve to be compensated for their losses.

Learn About Your Rights After a Semi-Truck Accident

To learn more information about pursuing financial compensation after a semi-truck accident, contact Morrow & Sheppard LLP. For a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys, call our Houston, TX law offices at (800) 489-2216 or take action online today.

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