Articles Posted in Tractor-Trailer Accidents

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The National Transportation Safety Board (“NTSB”) recently unveiled its 2016 Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements. This list, which details the most important safety issues to be addressed in 2016, focuses on 10 broad safety improvements that the NTSB has previously recommended, but which have not yet been implemented. One of the top items on the list is the fight to prevent fatigue-related truck accidents.

According to the NTSB, in a recent survey performed by AAA of highway vehicles, over 43% of participants reported falling asleep at the wheel or nodding off while driving at least once in their lifetime; and a 2010 AAA study estimated that one out of every six (16.5%) deadly traffic accidents is the result of drowsy driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (“NHTSA”) Administrator recently announced at the “Asleep at the Wheel” program in November that between 5,000 and 7,000 fatalities occur annually in the United States.

Among the recommendations issued by the NTSB to combat this problem, is equipping all interstate commercial vehicle carriers with electronic logging devices that collect data on driver hours of service in a valid, accurate, and secure manner to enable the carriers and their regulators to monitor and assess hours-of-service compliance. The NTSB also recommends that companies establish fatigue risk management programs which includes policies or practices to address scheduling, attendance, education, medical screening and treatment, personal responsibility during non-work periods, task/workload issues, rest environments, and commuting and/or napping. According to the NTSB’s press release on the topic, “[u]ltimately, fatigue-related accidents can be avoided with a combination of science-based regulations, comprehensive fatigue risk management programs, and individual responsibility.”

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Your News Now reports that an Amtrak passenger train traveling from Cleveland, Ohio to Albany, New York collided with a tractor trailer in Dunkirk last week. The driver of the semi-truck was killed in the accident, though neither the train’s crew members nor any of its 236 passengers were injured in the crash.

Police reported that the driver of the truck attempted to drive around a lowered track crossing gate when the cab of his truck was struck by the train that was traveling over sixty miles per hour. Passengers said they felt the impact of the collision, but were otherwise unaware of what had occurred until several hours later.

Trains are a part of every day life here in central New York, and while they are a necessary and useful part of our transportation infrastructure, they also pose a threat to passengers, pedestrians, and motor vehicles. Because trains are heavy and travel at high speeds, when railway accidents occur, they usually have devastating consequences.

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For many, the winter holiday season means family gatherings and, as a result, the season also means increased traffic on New York State roadways. An increase in automobile traffic, as well as commercial vehicles used to transport presents and merchandise this time of year, can cause the State’s highways and byways become more crowded and, in turn, more dangerous to travel. We here at Bottar Law, PLLC want to wish everyone a happy holidays and take this opportunity to ask our readers to be careful when driving to see loved ones this year, because winter weather and increased traffic can be a dangerous mix.

The Post-Standard reports that a major accident occurred yesterday on the New York State Thruway in Van Buren. After an initial investigation, the New York State police found that a semi-truck jackknifed near Exit 39 on the Thruway on December 7th and blocked all of the westbound traffic. Within moments, a second and third trailer collided with the first truck, setting fire to one big rig. Two of the drivers were injured and taken to the hospital after law enforcement arrived at the scene, and thankfully neither driver sustained life-threatening injuries.

This news story illustrates how dangerous driving amongst tractor-trailers can be, and serves as a warning to drivers everywhere. Because of their size, semi-trucks can do serious damage to other motorists, and accidents often occur due to driver negligence. If you or someone you know was injured in an accident with a tractor-trailer, you should contact a New York truck accident attorney immediately The aid of an experienced lawyer can be invaluable in getting you compensated for your injuries.
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