Trucking accidents can be extremely destructive and sadly, often result in fatal collisions when large trucks collide with other, much smaller and thus more vulnerable passenger vehicles. For those who survive, the collision can often be devastating, causing serious injuries, lifelong disability, and the need for permanent ongoing care.
One such serious accident took place recently in St. Louis, MO. Early last week on the McKinley Bridge a terrible accident occurred when there was a crash involving an 18-wheeler and a passenger vehicle. The accident was so bad that emergency crews were forced to shut down lanes in both directions while they worked to extract the injured victims from the wreckage.
Police have said that St. Louis City EMS transported two people in one ambulance, another person in a second ambulance, and, after working to free a fourth person, transported them by ambulance as well to a local hospital. The four were reported to have suffered serious injuries as a result of the crash. As of now police are continuing their investigations and have not said what the cause is.
There's a reason that when you hear of an accident involving a truck it's so common to hear reports of such severe injuries. The main reason for the danger of such wrecks is the sheer size and mass of the truck, which by itself can cause a deadly impact. Some commercial vehicles when fully loaded can weigh in excess of 100,000 pounds, many times heavier than an ordinary passenger car.
Second, the speed of trucks and the amount of time drivers spend driving can also lead to fatal car accidents. This increase in speed and driving time results from an increasing emphasis trucking companies place on quick delivery times. The pressure for efficiency can lead some drivers to ignore speed limits and fudge on their required rest periods. Given the dangers posed by heavy trucks, it's disturbing that so many drivers work such long hours with little sleep.
All of the above factors come together to make truck accidents extremely dangerous. In 2010, there were 105 deaths from large truck crashes in Missouri. While that number is already too high, numbers from the state reveal that 2011 saw an increase, with 120 people dying from injuries sustained in truck accidents on Missouri roads. The disproportionate danger of large truck accidents is clear: nationwide, large trucks make up about 3% of the vehicles on the road. However, Missouri semi truck accidents account for as much as 15% of traffic deaths.
Given the danger posed by tractor-trailers, it's crucial to always use caution when on the road. Never tailgate a semi and avoid cutting of big rigs, as they are much less agile than passenger cars.
The St. Louis car accident attorneys can provide the skilled legal representation needed by those who have been involved in an accident. For information on how to protect your legal rights if you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an accident, call us today at 314-863-0500.
Source: "McKinley Bridge reopens after two-vehicle crash," published at STLToday.com.
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