10 Important Things to Know About Rear End Crashes with Semi Trucks
- According to data from the U.S. FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration), every year 400,000 or more heavy trucks are involved in motor vehicle accidents in the United States. Our Pearland, TX truck accident lawyers note that around 18% of the crashes are rear end wrecks.
- Semi trucks can be 40 or more times heavier than a passenger vehicle. A fully loaded 18-wheeler might weigh 80,000 pounds or more. Because of their weight, heavy trucks start more slowly, are less maneuverable, and take longer to stop or change course than passenger cars and light trucks.
- In fatal rear end crashes between passenger vehicles and semi trucks, passenger vehicles strike the 18-wheelers three times more often than trucks strike the cars. Overall, passenger vehicles rear end trucks 50% more often than trucks rear end passenger vehicles.
- In almost 20% of rear end crashes where the semi truck was the striking vehicle, three or more vehicles were involved in the crash. But only in 5% of those wrecks where the passenger vehicle rear-ended the truck were more than the two vehicles involved. 46% of the crashes where the car ran into the truck were fatal, but only 16% of those caused by the truck were fatal. The Pearland, TX truck accident lawyers at Denena Points, PC caution that this is because the size and weight of a passenger vehicle does little to slow down a moving truck or prevent it from continuing on to strike further vehicles. By contrast, a smaller passenger car rear-ending a semi can’t budge the larger truck and often ends up under the truck in a severe underride accident.
- In rear end wrecks involving three vehicles, more than half include at least two heavy trucks. About 66% of those involving four vehicles include at least two semi trucks. This is largely because trucks often travel together in convoys.
- 41% of fatal rear end wrecks caused by the passenger car striking the truck occurred on interstate highways, as did 58% of those where the truck struck the smaller vehicle. Our Pearland, TX truck accident lawyers point out that only 20% of the other types of fatal 18-wheeler crashes occurred on the interstates.
- About 66% of crashes where passenger vehicles rear end semi trucks occur at night, but almost 90% of such accidents caused by the 18-wheelers occur in daylight.
- Almost 5 times more passenger vehicle drivers than truck drivers were intoxicated at the time of the rear end wrecks.
- In almost 55% of rear end crashes caused by the semi, the truck had at least one brake safety violation. Our Pearland, TX truck accident lawyers compare that number with the only 30% where the passenger vehicle struck the truck.
- Where passenger vehicles struck the 18-wheelers in rear end crashes, around 40% of the trucks were found to have lighting violations, compared to only 13% of those wrecks where the semi struck the car.
Click the link to read about a recent fatal rear end wreck between a passenger vehicle and a semi truck.