FMCSA Plans for New Truck Crash Causation Study

The FMCSA will conduct a new causation study in truck accidents to reduce the crash rate

Truck accidents are often fatal when affecting smaller passenger cars, given the weight and size of 18 wheels. To reduce Fatalities from truck accidentsSecurity experts emphasize the need to reduce the overall collision rate. According to a current article in Freight wavesThe Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has announced plans to conduct a new study on the causation of truck accidents for the first time in over 15 years. The study aims to provide new information on the causes of truck accidents, taking into account changes in technology and driver behavior. In particular, the FMCSA would like to see how cell phone use has affected truck accidents.

The study is in the very early stages – the FMCSA is currently seeking information on how best to design and conduct a study to identify factors contributing to all towing, injury and fatal accidents that are reportable by the FMCSA Accidents. A formal proposal for the study was published in January 2020. According to the proposal, the FMCSA plans to apply a methodology that looks at the use of on-board electronic systems to generate information about speeding, lane departure and hard braking, and it will also seek to identify other behaviors, activities and conditions that occur on trucks -Accidents play a role. Comments on the study are due in March 2020.

In recent years, accident rates for large trucks have increased. Between 2009 and 2018, fatal truck collisions increased by 52.6%. Back in 2003, when the FMCSA completed its first study on the causation of truck accidents, it found that driver errors were the main cause of collisions. It is examined whether this fact has persisted in recent years and whether the negligence of a truck driver in particular is the main reason for accidents in times of increasing technology.

In looking for comments on his proposal, the FMCSA asked for answers to a number of questions. First, the FMCSA would like comments on whether it should create a nationally representative sample or whether it can focus on the “convenience sample” instead. Next, the FMCSA asks for comments on these two approaches, including the pros and cons of each. Then they want to know how important it is to conduct a study that is comparable to the study conducted in the early 2000s. Finally, the FMCSA looks for additional information about new data sources that it has not yet considered.

Find out more about truck accidents

While we wait to learn more about truck collisions from the FMCSA study, the following facts and figures will be extracted from the Road Safety Insurance Institute (IIHS) help to show the severity of truck accidents:

  • 4,136 people were killed in truck accidents in 2018;
  • 67% of those killed in truck collisions are occupants of passenger cars;
  • 16% of people who are fatally injured in large truck collisions are large truck occupants.
  • 15% of the people killed in major truck accidents are pedestrians, cyclists or motorcyclists.
  • The number of truck accident fatalities increased significantly between 2009 and 2008 (the truck accident rate was lowest in 2009). and
  • The number of truck occupant deaths has risen particularly sharply since 2009.

If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a truck accident, it is a good idea to speak to a Truck accident attorney about your case.

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