Many Oklahoma commuters are quite familiar with the sight of large commercial trucks sharing the roadways and some might have even witnessed an accident involving one of these big rigs. Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate that, in 2012, some 333,000 large trucks were involved in traffic accidents in the United States. As a result, 104,000 people were injured and 3,921 people died throughout the country.
Large trucks are vehicles that weigh more than 10,000 pounds. The number of people injured in truck accidents rose 18 percent in 2012 compared to the previous year, according to the numbers provided by the NHTSA. Of the injured victims, around 76,000 were other vehicle occupants, about 25,000 were truck occupants and around 3,000 were non-vehicle occupants, such as pedestrians and cyclists.
Among the truck occupants injured, about 9,000 occurred in single-vehicle accidents and around 17,000 occurred in multi-vehicle accidents, reportedly. These numbers combined are still dwarfed by the number of motorists of other vehicles involved in truck accidents who suffer injuries, approximately 76.000 or about 73 percent of all people injured in truck accidents.
The number of truck accident fatalities increased 4 percent in 2012 compared to the previous year. Of the fatal victims, 2,843 were other vehicle occupants, 697 were truck occupants and 381 were non-vehicle occupants.
When a truck driver causes an accident that injures other vehicle occupants, the injured parties might be eligible for personal injury compensation via civil action; namely, a personal injury lawsuit. On the other hand, truck drivers who are injured in accidents or families of truck drivers who are killed might be entitled to compensation if it can be shown with a preponderance of evidence that other vehicle drivers caused the accident. Victims who are unsure whether their case may be viable enough to elicit personal injury compensation or wrongful death compensation might wish to seek out a lawyer to discuss their circumstances.
Source: US Department of Transportation, "Large Trucks", December 01, 2014