A string of truck accidents near St. Joseph has pushed police to insist that it is an anomaly. The way they did it, though, failed to provide the whole picture.
Police Try Explaining Rash of Truck Accidents
Since January 25, Troop H of the Missouri State Highway Patrol – which covers northwestern Missouri down to the city of St. Joseph – has worked 23 car accidents. Of those, a quarter have involved semi-trucks.
Police have felt the need to explain that the trend was just a coincidence. They have said that truck accidents cause more damage and traffic delays, and that makes them more likely to make the news. They also said that wind and wintry conditions are more difficult for truckers.
A better explanation would have been to delve into the statistics surrounding truck accidents.
What Percentage of Crashes Involve Large Trucks?
Overall, only about 1 in 13 crashes involve a large truck.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), of the 6,734,000 motor vehicle accidents that were reported to the police in 2018, 499,000 of them involved a large truck. That amounts to only 7.4 percent.
Of course, these are only the accidents that get reported to the police. Minor collisions that cause little property damage and no injuries may not get reported. However, large trucks tend not to be involved in those crashes: They tend to travel on highways at high speeds and cause significant damage with the substantial weight they bring to a collision.
When Do Tractor Trailer Crashes Happen?
Truck accidents tend to happen during the day, and generally happen on weekdays.
Contrast this to car accidents that do not involve trucks.
Looking at numbers from the NHTSA, the National Safety Council has found that 22.7 percent of all accidents happened on the weekend, nearly twice as often as truck crashes.
Truck Accidents are Overrepresented on Highways and Main Roads
Finally, state troopers and highway patrol officers are more likely than local police to have to deal with truck accidents because comparatively few happen on local streets.
The vast majority of the miles driven by truckers happen on major roadways, including interstate highways and major routes like Route 36 or Route 169 in St. Joseph.
Because most of those miles happen in the jurisdiction of the state police, truck crashes are likely to be overrepresented in state police crash reports.
Car Accident Lawyers at the Smith Law Office in St. Joseph
When a car accident involves a tractor-trailer or a semi-truck, the results are often devastating. Recovering the compensation that you need to overcome the injuries that you have suffered is essential.