The NHTSA Reports Fatal Truck Accidents Remained Unchanged Over the Past Three Years
According to an online news report posted on landline.media, statistics published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that there have been no notable changes in the number of fatality accidents involving large commercial trucks over the past few years. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines “large trucks” as commercial and noncommercial vehicles that have a gross weight of 10,000 or more pounds.
Fortunately, the number of fatal large truck accidents decreased by 2% in 2019. In 2019, there were approximately 36,000 fatalities compared to around 36,800 truck accident deaths reported in 2018. One key metric used by the NHTSA is the “fatality rate.” The fatality rate for 2018 was 1.14, and 2019 had the lowest fatality rate since 2014. In 2019, the fatality rate was 1.10 per 100 million vehicle miles traveled.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also published its preliminary fatal truck accident estimations for the first half of 2020. The preliminary statistics reveal that 8,870 people were killed in traffic accidents in the second quarter of 2020. This was a decrease of a little more than 3% compared to 2019’s second quarter. Part of the decline was due to the stay-at-home orders issued to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The first six months of 2020 saw a 16% decrease in traffic volume.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drivers were engaging in dangerous behavior such as speeding, racing, driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and not wearing seat belts. Data from the NHTSA shows that extreme speeding became more prevalent than in prior years. ,
NHTSA’s deputy administrator James Owens stated that the NHTSA is very concerned by the increased fatality rate trend the agency has seen starting in April. According to the NHTSA, the number of professional truck drivers testing positive for opioids almost doubled after mid-March, and the number of truck drivers testing positive for marijuana grew by about 50%.
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