Trucks often weigh 20-30 times more than passenger cars. In 2006, 385,000 large trucks were involved in traffic accidents in the U.S.; around 106,000 people were injured in those accidents. Of those injured 4,995 people died in large truck crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. A mere 15 percent of the fatalities were the truck occupants, while 76 percent were people in cars and other passenger vehicles, and nine percent were pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorcyclists.
A large truck is any truck whose vehicle weight is over 10,000 pounds, big semi tractor trailers can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Because of their size, crashes involving large trucks and big rigs are more likely to result in serious injury and death than are car crashes. Semi trucks are more likely to be involved in multiple-vehicle crashes than are passenger cars. Both Federal and state regulations govern trucking and cover areas such as safety of equipment and hours of the drivers. Trucking companies are required to keep records of such information and it will be necessary to find and research such records. Poor equipment and driver fatigue can be causes of such crashes, and a careful study of the trucking company records may be needed to determine if negligence has occurred.
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