They roll in and out of Raleigh all day and all night. Commercial trucks bring us goods we need and leave with goods we supply to others. Most trucking is done safely, but when a truck accident occurs it often results in catastrophic injuries and deaths.
It is about a 10-hour drive north from Raleigh along the coast to get to Edison, New Jersey. It’s the kind of drive that long-haul truckers make routinely, usually without incident. Unfortunately, when mistakes are made with tractor-trailers, everyone on the road is in danger of severe injuries or being killed by the enormous, heavy trucks.
Anyone who has been on the interstate highways in the Raleigh area knows that tractor-trailers make up a significant portion of the thick, fast-moving traffic. We count on 18-wheelers to bring in goods and carry out products to the rest of the nation.
As we well know from this past North Carolina winter, weather can rapidly change for the worse, bringing with it dangerous driving conditions. In some cases, motorists are urged to wait for a storm to pass than to try to navigate slippery roads with minimal visibility.
Regular readers of our Raleigh Personal Injury Law Blog know that in our previous post, we took a look at some of truck accident data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). One of the most important points made by the nonprofit organization is that 18-wheelers weigh up to 30 times as much as passenger vehicles and require up to 40 percent more road distance in which to come to a full stop.
Here in Raleigh, we have interstate highways coming at us from all directions. The biggest and most dangerous vehicles rolling down those strips of pavement are large commercial trucks hauling goods in and out of our city.
In theory, we are all riding on the road to zero. We just don't know how we'll get there or if we'll ever arrive. The recently formed Road To Zero Coalition hopes to dramatically reduce the numbers of motor vehicle accidents, injuries and fatalities. The coalition's ultimate goal is to reduce fatalities to zero.
If the initiatives of the Road to Zero Coalition are successful, fatal traffic accidents in North Carolina will eventually be a thing of the past. The safety coalition, which is made up of 675 members, aims to bring the number of traffic-related deaths to zero by 2050. After several years of decline, the number of motor vehicle fatalities increased by 5.6 percent in 2016. Of the 37,461 fatalities, 4,317 were in traffic accidents that involved large trucks.
In their effort to receive compensation for injuries, truck accident victims can choose to pursue a lawsuit in civil court or to settle the case out of court. These two options are given under civil law in North Carolina, and they come with their advantages and disadvantages. There is no question, though, that settling out of court can save victims both time and money.
Truck accidents can cause devastating personal injuries and even fatalities on the roadways of North Carolina and across the country. There are over 7 million people employed in the trucking industry, and they transport over 70 percent of the country's cargo. While truck drivers can earn a good living, the arduous, tiring schedule can be difficult to handle. Turnover is regularly higher than 90 percent.