Onboard Safety Systems Could Prevent Thousands of Truck Crashes

Putting advanced video-based safety technologies and other new safety systems on tractor-trailers could prevent up to 63,000 truck crashes per year, according to a recent study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. 

The 15-month study determined that large trucks in 2015 were involved in at least 400,000 crashes that caused 4,000 deaths and 116,000 injuries. The study was entitled ‘Leveraging Large Truck Technology and Engineering to Realize Safety Gains.’ It examined the safety benefits of putting four types of safety technologies on tractor trailers. They were:

    • Lane departure warning systems
    • Automatic emergency braking

Air disc Video-based

  • Video-based onboard safety monitoring

There is no doubt that truck safety technology can save lives, according to David Yang, executive director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. The new research shows that the many benefits of adding these systems will outweigh the cost.

AAA analysts also concluded the following:

  • Tractor trailer lane departure warning systems could prevent 6372 crashes per year and 115 deaths.
  • Video-based onboard safety monitoring systems could prevent 63,000 crashes and 293 deaths per year.
  • Automatic emergency braking systems could prevent 5294 crashes and 55 deaths per year
  • Air disc brakes could prevent 2411 crashes and 37 deaths per year

Our View

As tractor trailer accident attorneys licensed in Virginia and North Carolina, we support any new safety measures that could result in fewer people being injured or killed in truck accidents every year.

There are several factors in play that make tractor-trailers more dangerous than regular vehicles. These additional dangers can be reduced with more safety equipment:

  • Driver fatigue. Truck drivers drive long hours. Even when they are driving only the hours they are legally allowed, most truckers drive far more hours per week than typical car drivers. Driver fatigue can be combatted by getting better rest, but safety systems could help to prevent crashes when a trucker gets tired, such as automatic emergency braking systems.
  • Visibility. Trucks are big and it is sometimes hard for truckers to see what they need to see around their vehicle. Video safety systems could help truckers to improve their ability see around their rig on the road.
  • Size and weight. Trucks are massive and may legally weigh up to 80,000 pounds. They take longer to stop. Automatic emergency braking and disc brakes could make a huge difference in preventing crashes.

Having better safety systems on tractor-trailers could really put a dent in the number of truck accidents. This would go a long way toward reducing injuries and fatalities. And there would be far fewer personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits.