On behalf of Weisman, Kennedy & Berris Co., L.P.A. posted in Truck Accidents on Thursday, November 7, 2013.

Here’s the scenario that traffic safety officials in Ohio and elsewhere across the country most definitely do not want to see: a large truck driving on a roadway or interstate during daylight hours in the rain while speeding.

Those combined factors comprise a near perfect storm of danger-enhancing elements that heighten the chance of a truck accident.

And what is perhaps most noteworthy statistically, in crash outcomes involving large trucks, is that it is occupants of other passenger vehicles who are most often fatally or seriously injured in collisions.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently released a wealth of crash-related information regarding the nation’s largest commercial trucks — those weighing more than 10,000 pounds. Those roadway behemoths can unsurprisingly unleash lethal consequences in accidents involving other vehicles, and what the FMCSA finds troubling is a short-term trend showing that fatal crashes involving large trucks are on the rise.

Data from 2011 indicate that 3,757 people died in such accidents that year, with approximately 80,000 others being injured. Big rig operators comprised only 14 percent of the fatalities, with the remainder being drivers and other occupants of passenger vehicles involved in collisions with commercial trucks.

Although obviously being discouraged by the uptick in crashes over preceding years, FMCSA officials also express optimism over a long-term trend clearly revealing that fatal accidents involving large trucks are on the wane. They hope that the recent rise in crashes is merely an anomaly.

The crash data reveal that, overall, commercial truck drivers seem to be more conscientious motorists than drivers and their occupants in passenger vehicles. Truckers, for example, are shown to be more likely to wear seat belts in fatal crashes. Moreover, close to 90 percent of head-on collisions studied by the FMCSA were caused by drivers of passenger vehicles.

Source: Transport Topics, “Trucks involved in fatal crashes rise 3% in 2011, FMCSA says,” Scott Gutierrez, Nov. 1, 2013