More large trucks and buses are becoming involved in fatal accidents in North Carolina and around the country according to a report from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The agency observed increases between 2014 and 2015 in both the number of commercial vehicles weighing in excess of 10,000 pounds involved in fatal crashes and the number of fatal accidents per 100 million miles traveled by trucks and buses.
Law enforcement responded to 4,050 fatal trucking accidents in 2015 according to the annual FMCSA Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts report. In addition to the thousands who lost their lives in truck crashes, about 83,000 road users suffered injuries of some sort. While most of the fatal accidents involved two motor vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and non-motorized vehicle users accounted for an alarming 20 percent of those involved.
Truck occupant fatalities rose by 2 percent to 667 in 2015 according to the FMCSA data, and it was the truck driver who was killed 89 percent of the time. The number of deadly crashes involving large trucks or buses fell by 34 percent between 2005 and 2009, but it has since risen by 20 percent.
The dependent family members of those killed in truck accidents are often left in desperate financial situations, and experienced personal injury attorneys may seek civil remedies on their behalf in situations where negligence could have played a role. Losing a breadwinner can leave families unable to meet their financial obligations, and unexpected expenses like medical bills and funeral costs can make their situations even more challenging. When presented with facts like these, attorneys pursuing wrongful death litigation may seek damages for the loss of the decedent’s financial contributions.