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How new technology could help reduce truck accident fatalities

While most people understand that serious truck accidents can and do occur on the roads and highways around us, they may not truly appreciate just how great and just how regularly they occur.

For instance, did you know that data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that in 2012 alone 3,514 people were killed in truck crashes here in the U.S., and that 67 percent of these fatalities were occupants of passenger vehicles like cars, pickups and SUVs?

Furthermore, did you know that the NHTSA estimates that collisions caused by heavy trucks colliding into the rear ends of passenger vehicles occur at a rate of two to three per hour here in the U.S.?

These rear-end collisions are often especially deadly as they involve passenger vehicles that have had to come to a complete stop only to be plowed into from behind by trucks weighing several tons that have not slowed down at all thanks in large part to driver inattention.

The good news is that several companies are now working on refining truck collision avoidance technology designed to help eliminate these otherwise avoidable tragedies.

Remarkably, these advanced systems are capable of everything from employing automatic braking so that a safe stopping distance is maintained between a truck and the vehicle ahead, and increasing the stopping power of the truck when a collision is imminent.

Furthermore, some of these automatic systems can actually detect when there is a stationary, metallic object (i.e., a stalled/stopped vehicle) in the oncoming path of the truck, issuing a series of audible warnings up to three seconds prior to a crash.

According to experts, however, while these systems are indeed impressive, they are also dependent upon truck drivers receiving the proper training on how to manage them, meaning the responsibility for safe driving also rests with trucking fleet operators.

For those who remain unconvinced about how effective this truck collision avoidance technology can be, consider that the U.S. Department of Transportation recently predicted that nearly 300 traffic deaths per year could be prevented by their universal installment.

If you've been seriously injured or lost a loved one in a truck accident, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional to learn more about your options for seeking justice.

Source: InsuranceNews.Net, "Truck technology targets collision avoidance ; Studies show fatalities on heavily traveled highways could be reduced," Dan Dundon, Nov. 5, 2014

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