Florida truck accidents can inflict catastrophic injuries, devastating families and imposing enormous costs on society as a whole. While debate is bubbling about driverless truck technology and other futuristic advances that might help us come close to ending truck accidents altogether, those visions are a long way from reality. Furthermore, there are some simple and far more cost effective ways to make trucks safer now. One of those, proposed by federal lawmakers earlier this year, is a mandate to install tractor-trailer side underride guards.
Consumer Reports noted in a recent article that such low-tech upgrade could save hundreds of lives annually by preventing smaller passenger vehicles from ending up partially or completely underneath the truck. It essentially works like a metal bumper, hanging from the sides and rear of the trailer so cars won’t get smashed underneath in the event of a truck accident.
In 2016, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reported there were 250 deaths resulting from a vehicle smashing into the rear of a tractor-trailer and 305 that involved hitting a large truck from the side. Testing by that agency showed a side underride guard was effective in blocking a passenger vehicle from becoming wedged under the side of the truck when the vehicles were traveling at 40 mph. When side underride guards on trucks are strong, they can slash the risk of serious injury in approximately three-fourths of all cases. Many are calling for legislative action to make this a required feature on all large trucks in the U.S. Continue reading →