Truck accident fatalities up slightly in 2011, but down 25% in last decade

truck-crashAlthough trucks were involved in 3 percent more fatal accidents in 2011 than the previous year, this category declined 25 percent 2001-2011.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration most recent analysis of large truck accidents indicated 3,608 trucks were involved in fatal crashes during 2011, a 12 percent decline from 2008. Between 2001-2011, the number of truck accidents that included injuries dropped 30 percent and the number of crashes resulting in property damage only decreased 34 percent.

Driver-related factors were recorded for 56 percent of truckers in single-vehicle fatalities crashes and 29 percent of multiple-vehicle fatalities. For passenger vehicle drivers involved in fatal accidents, at least one driver-related factor was attributed to 76 percent of single vehicle and 52 percent of multiple vehicle accidents.

Speeding was considered the top driver related factor in fatalities for both trucks and passenger vehicles. While distraction or inattention took was the second most common driver factor for truckers, fatigue, alcohol or drug use or illness took second place for four-wheelers.

For 2011 accidents involved fatalities, blood tests detected alcohol for 2.5 percent of truckers and 27.3 percent of passenger vehicle drivers.  Fatal accidents involving trucks indicated percent occurred on rural roads and 34 percent between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. and on weekdays.

Additionally, of the truckers involved in fatalities, 6 percent were 25 years or younger and 5 percent were 66 years of age or older.

Click here to read the complete report, Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts 2011.