Truck accidents are a pervasive public safety hazard. Every year, thousands of Americans are killed in preventable truck accidents. New and emerging technologies have a demonstrable effect on the number of truck accidents that occur. Yet the cost of these technologies has led some trucking companies to delay - or avoid - implementing them in their commercial truck fleets. The marginal cost of safety features is a fraction of the medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, property damage, and other financial losses sustained by accident victims. Commercial transportation companies have a legal obligation to take reasonable measures to ensure the safety of their fleets. An experienced Akron truck accident attorney will be sure to hold negligent truck drivers and transportation companies accountable for their dangerous conduct.
The Scope of the Problem - And Its Simple Solutions
AAA reports that in 2015 alone, truck accidents were responsible for the deaths of over four thousand Americans. An additional 116,000 people were injured. In further exploring the problem, the AAA Foundation for Public Safety issued a report on the efficacy of new truck safety features, entitled Leveraging Large Truck Technology and Engineering to Realize Gains. This study examined four safety features for large trucks to determine the costs and benefits of each. The features investigated were: lane departure warning systems, automatic emergency braking, air disc brakes, and video-based onboard safety monitoring. These four systems were projected to save a total of five hundred lives each year (more than ten percent of the total truck accident deaths experienced in the United States in 2015). They were also estimated to prevent more than 75,000 truck accidents every year.
What Ohio Drivers Can Do to Protect Themselves on the Road
When transportation companies analyze the costs and benefits of implementing new safety technologies, the simple figures support the use of such features. On that basis, one would hope that transportation companies could support public safety for their own financial interests. The value of human life is a separate - and invaluable - component which would support federal legislation mandating such safety measures. Until that time, Ohio drivers must take it upon themselves to prevent accidents, and reduce the severity of injuries which are sustained in a truck accident.
Seat belt use has long been known to reduce the severity of injuries sustained in a collision. This has been repeatedly corroborated over decades of research. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that seat belt use saved an estimated 64,000 lives between 2011 and 2015. Seat belt use is more than a good idea: It is mandated by Ohio law. Section 4513.263 of the Ohio Revised Statutes prohibits drivers from operating a motor vehicle unless the driver - and all passengers subject to seat belt use regulations - are wearing all of the available elements of a properly adjusted occupant restraining device.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident, our experienced Akron truck accident attorney can help you explore your legal options. Injury victims represented by an attorney consistently obtain more compensation for their financial losses.