Archive for the ‘Truck Accidents’ Category

New Technology May Help Decrease Tractor Trailer Accidents

July 21st, 2015 at 7:00 am

tractor trailer accidents, Westport Personal Injury AttorneyMost travelers dread driving around or near a tractor trailer. Big rigs can be intimidating because of their size, and can cause a legitimate uneasiness for those driving near one due to the dangers they may cause.

Every year in the U.S., there are nearly 4,000 people killed in tractor trailer crashes, and almost more than 105,000 people are seriously injured. Over 300,000 tractor trailers are involved in accidents every year. According to figures released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTA), almost half of those accidents involve a truck and a vehicle both traveling straight at the time of the crash.

Being stuck behind a tractor trailer can be frustrating due to the massive size of the vehicle. Moreover, it can be impossible to see what is ahead or what is coming in the opposite direction because a tractor trailer can block one’s view entirely. However, new technology by one company may help solve this issue for many drivers.

Samsung Technology Gives Cars a Better View 

Samsung, the company known for the manufacturing of televisions, phones, and other electronics, has begun mounting giant screens on the back of their company’s tractor trailers which gives the cars behind the truck a clear view of what is in front of the truck.

The screen is actually a video wall which uses four outside monitors. Wireless cameras are placed in the front of the truck and transmit to the monitors in real time. The technology enables drivers behind the tractor trailer to prepare for any situations which may be coming at them but are unable to see because of the truck’s size. Additionally, the screens enable drivers to see what is in the next lane, or coming at them from opposing traffic, therefore assisting when trying to pass the truck.

Samsung has been testing the screens in Argentina, where the accident fatality rate is extremely high. According to the country’s statistics, one person is killed every hour in a vehicle accident.

A Compassionate Westport Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

If you have been injured in an accident caused by a tractor trailer, please contact an experienced Westport personal injury attorney to find out what compensation you may be entitled to for your pain and loss. We are here to help you.

FMCSA Keeps Current Truck Driver Random Drug Testing Requirements

March 30th, 2015 at 7:00 am

truck driver, random drug testing, Westport personal injury attorneyThe Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently announced that the trucking industry will be required to continue with the same level of random drug testing in 2015 as was required in 2014.

The FMCSA says its decision to continue to require truck companies to randomly drug test at least 50 percent of their drivers comes as a result of “the data from motor carrier industry-controlled substance lab test results, the 2012 drug and alcohol testing survey and additional investigations.”

The trucking industry had hoped that the FMCSA would drop their requirement of random drug testing to only 25 percent of truck drivers, which is the current requirement of other transportation industries, including public and marine. However, the FMCSA refused to lower the requirement for reasons, and included the following findings:

  • Between 2011 and 2012, subsequent drug test results following an initial positive drug test increased by more than 4 percent;
  • Reasonable suspicion positive drug tests results had a five-fold increase in a three year period. In 2010, the increase was 5.6 percent. In 2012, that increase jumped to 37.2 percent;
  • There were 97,332 positive drug tests from independent Health and Human Services-certified laboratories which were reported to the federal Department of Transportation in 2012. This revealed an increase from the 95,427 positive tests reported in 2011. More than 80 percent of those drug tests came from FMCSA-regulated industries;
  • In almost one-fourth of the most recent compliant investigations, the violations reported involved serious alcohol and controlled substance abuse; and
  • In 2014, a two-week strike force targeting drivers who tested positive for drugs resulted in cases against 205 drivers. There was an additional 138 cases filed against transportation carriers. Drivers involved in these cases were responsible for operating vehicles which were transporting hazardous materials, as well as vehicles carrying passengers.

Truck drivers who operate under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol put everyone else on the road in grave danger. If you have been injured in trucking accident, please contact an experienced Westport personal injury attorney to discuss what legal compensation you may be entitled to for your pain and loss. Call Richard H. Raphael, Attorney at Law, at 203-226-6168 today to schedule your free consultation.

NTSB Releases Truck Safety Recommendations

February 17th, 2015 at 7:00 am

truck safety recommendations, Westport personal injury attorneyThe National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has issued a list of what they say should be safety priorities for 2015. According to the NTSB, there are over 100 truck safety recommendations that have been made by the agency, but highway regulators have failed to act on those recommendations, contributing to the number of truck accidents that occur every day.

There are more than two million commercial truck drivers on the nation’s roadways. There are also more than 4,000 people killed every year in truck crashes. One of the most publicized crashes from 2014 involved comedian Tracy Morgan, who was seriously injured when a commercial truck plowed into the limousine in which Morgan, along with five other people, were traveling. One person was killed in that crash. Walmart, the owner of the truck, recently settled a wrongful death suit with the dead victim’s family. There are also criminal charges pending against the driver of that truck.

The NTSB’s statistics show that there has been a 17 percent increase in the number of fatal truck accidents, since 2009. One of the biggest causes of these accidents is driver fatigue. In the Morgan accident, police records show the driver had not slept for over 24 hours. The NTSB says that trucking companies should be putting policies into place that to not only ensure their drivers are not struggling with fatigue, but to also screen them for any sleep disorders which could also affect their driving.

The dangers of driver fatigue may play even more of a role in trucking accidents thanks to a move by Congress which did away with a regulation which prohibited truck drivers from working more than 82 hours in an eight day period.

Another issue the NTSB points out in their report is the lack of enforcing safety regulations. Too many trucks—more than 20 percent on the road—fail safety inspections. The agencies stresses there should be much more enforcement by highway regulators of these inspections.

If you have been injured in an accident caused by a commercial truck driver, contact an experienced Westport personal injury attorney to find out what legal recourse you may have against the driver and company for your pain and loss.

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