What Are the Most Common Types of Truck Accidents?
Truck accidents in Florida and states across the country have become increasingly common. Each year, nearly 5,000 people die in accidents involving commercial truck drivers, according to the National Safety Council.
So, why are so many truck accidents happening?
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently conducted an in-depth study of accidents involving commercial motor vehicles. The federal agency analyzed truck crash data from 141,000 crashes.
Rear-end truck accidents are the most common
Based on its study, the FMCSA found that the five most common types of truck accidents are:
- Rear-end truck accidents (23.1 percent of truck accidents) – A rear-end truck crash typically involves a semi-truck hitting another vehicle from behind, but the opposite can also be true. Common causes of rear-end truck accidents include the truck driver speeding, distracted driving (e.g., a texting trucker), impaired driving, defective truck brakes, and faulty truck lights.
- Ran off the road or veered into another lane (17.8 percent) – Negligent truck drivers often veer off the road or into another lane, especially on highways. While going too fast, distractions, fatigue, and driving under the influence can result in a trucker running off the road or veering into another lane, it’s also a widespread problem among inexperienced truckers who aren’t professionally trained or fail to adjust to road conditions.
- Sideswipe truck accidents (10.3 percent) – When a negligent truck driver fails to check for other vehicles or does not signal before changing lanes on a highway – it can easily result in a side-impact collision with another vehicle. This is a dangerous scenario for the smaller vehicle, which could get crushed underneath the truck’s trailer (known as an underride accident).
- Rollover truck accidents (8.9 percent) – Tractor-trailers can roll over onto their side, creating a serious accident involving multiple vehicles. Going too fast around curves or bends, taking turns too sharply, and over-steering frequently lead to rollover accidents. Along with truck driver negligence and inexperience, a rollover crash can happen if the truck’s cargo is improperly loaded, unsecured, or imbalanced.
- Trucks turning into oncoming traffic (8 percent) – Many head-on collisions and other serious intersection accidents occur when negligent truck drivers fail to yield and turn into oncoming traffic.
What are common trucker violations?
Commercial truck driver violations can reveal a lot about why 18-wheeler accidents happen.
In 2021, the five most common commercial truck driver violations based on FMCSA roadside inspections were:
- Speeding 6 to 10 mph over the speed limit (63,959 violations in 2021).
- Failure to obey traffic control device, including a traffic light or red light (59,213 violations).
- Failure to report a driver’s record of duty status, including not keeping accurate records of when the truck driver took mandatory breaks (53,311 violations).
- Failing to use a seat belt while operating a commercial motor vehicle or CMV (50,331 violations).
- Operating a CMV without a commercial driver’s license or CDL (42,013 violations)
What are common trucker violations in Florida?
In 2021, the five most common truck driver violations in Florida according to the FMCSA were:
- Failure to obey traffic control device, including a traffic light or red light (4,408 violations).
- Operating a property-carrying vehicle without possessing a valid medical certificate - no previous history (3,306 violations).
- Electronic logging device (ELD) - No record of duty status (ELD Required), which means the truck driver did not record when they were driving and when they took a mandatory rest break (2,001 violations).
- Operating a CMV without a CDL (1,803 violations).
- No record of duty status when one is required (ELD Not Required) (1,488 violations).
A truck accident lawyer can find the facts that matter
You might think you don’t need an attorney if you were injured or a loved one died in a Florida truck accident. A local police officer, a state trooper from the Florida Highway Patrol, or an inspector from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) might already be investigating your crash.
But it’s important to realize those investigations only focus on whether any state or federal laws were violated. They’re not concerned with whether you receive the compensation you need and deserve to cover your losses and get your life back on track.
That’s our job. At Pajcic & Pajcic, our highly skilled truck accident attorneys have years of experience successfully handling complicated cases in Florida and nationwide. This includes securing a historic $1 billion fatal truck accident verdict for a Florida family.
Learn more about how we can help you. Contact our law firm and schedule a free case evaluation with an experienced truck accident lawyer. We’re located in Jacksonville and proudly serve clients nationwide.