Semitruck crashes can be very serious for the occupants of the vehicles they slam into. One particular type of crash, a rear-end crash, is particularly problematic. These crashes often come when a trucker doesn’t realize that the other vehicles have stopped.
One troublesome fact to consider is that these accidents could be prevented or reduced in severity with the inclusion of a forward crash warning and mitigation system; however, profit seems to be placed above safety. While the personal vehicle industry says that these systems will be standard on all vehicles sold starting in 2022, there isn’t any promise of this sort from the manufacturers of semitrucks.
There isn’t any reason why innocent drivers and occupants of vehicles should be placed in danger due to lax safety standards. No fewer than 10 times since the late 1990s has the National Traffic Safety Board (NTSB) recommended the inclusion of these systems on big rigs. Unfortunately, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hasn’t taken any action on those recommendations.
Truckers can easily become distracted while they are driving. Even if there aren’t any distractions in the cab, there is a chance that they might just zone out due to the tedious nature of the drive. This can be disastrous. The victims who survive might require extensive medical care. Others might perish in the crash.
Any reduction in the number of fatal semitruck crashes should be a goal of regulators and those in the trucking industry. The most recent statistic on fatal big-rig crashes shows that more than 4,300 people died in 2016 in semi crashes. Since these deaths aren’t all in large groups, some people don’t realize the frequency. This number is the equivalent of having two fully loaded 737 airlines crashing each month without a single survivor.