Like all drivers, truckers sometimes get drowsy while traveling on roadways in California and across the United States. However, due to the massive size of big rigs, truck driver fatigue poses an elevated threat to occupants of other vehicles.
Every year, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance holds an inspection spree called the International Roadcheck for vehicle- and driver-related violations among CMV drivers. On average, 17 CMVs are inspected every minute during these sprees. Truck and bus drivers in California should know that the 2019 International Roadcheck is to be conducted from June 4 to 6.
In 2017, there were 4,102 deaths caused by large truck accidents in California and throughout the country. The rate of fatal truck crashes is about three times higher than the overall fatal crash rate. Of those who were killed in large truck accidents in 2017, 17 percent were occupants of the trucks themselves. A further 68 percent of victims were occupants of cars or other passenger vehicles while the rest were pedestrians.
Large truck accidents are on the rise, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Statistics show a three-year rise in fatalities among truck occupants and work zone accidents involving large trucks. Though high-tech measures can make trucks safer, the administrative agency claims that truck drivers in California and elsewhere can take other immediate steps to reduce these statistics.
Commercial truck safety is one of the focuses of the National Transportation Safety Board's 2019-2020 Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements. Truck fleet owners based in California should be aware of the various recommendations that the NTSB makes within it, as they could affect their operations.
California saw the second highest number (after Texas) of large truck crash fatalities in 2017. In fact, all but six states saw an increase in these fatalities from 2009 to 2017, according to federal data. This is despite the fact that the same eight-year period experienced a decrease in miles driven by commercial truckers. The highway safety non-profit Road Safe America has analyzed this data and come to several conclusions.
Every year, traffic accidents continue to take lives in California and across the country. A number of organizations and individuals have come together to form the Road to Zero Coalition, aiming to achieve zero traffic fatalities by 2050. The coalition's spokesperson noted that over 100 people are killed every day on American roadways, a figure that often goes unnoticed despite the significant toll. She noted that it may seem difficult or impossible to achieve the coalition's goals in slightly over three decades to come, but the commitment obtained in terms of resources and technology can have a significant impact on its success.
Drivers in California should know that commercial truck accident rates are going up across the nation. The number of truck occupant fatalities rose from 725 to 841 between 2016 and 2017, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. When pedestrians and occupants of motor vehicles are included, the number rose from 4,369 to 4,761.
Serious accidents involving dump trucks and ready-mix concrete delivery trucks are on the rise in California and across the United States according to the Federal Motor Carrier Administration. As a result, federal regulators and traffic safety experts are pushing trucking companies to take steps to reduce driver fatigue and adopt technology that monitors driver performance on the road.
A bill that would help prevent underride crashes from occurring to drivers in California and across the United States has stalled out in Congress. The bill, which is titled the Stop Underrides Act of 2017, aims to reduce the number of underride crashes that occur each year by requiring underride guards on the front and sides of each commercial truck. The bill would also update the standard requirements for underride guards on the back of trucks and require the Department of Transportation to update its standards every five years.