Semi "Underride" Accidents Prove Deadly
Improved gates aim to reduce fatal accidents
America relies on the trucking industry to deliver goods.
But semis also represent one of the greatest threats to American drivers on the roadways.
Passenger cars, pickups and SUVs are simply no match for these enormous vehicles. Tangle with a semi and you lose every time.
What Is An "Underride" Accident?
One type of accident poses a particular threat when it comes to semis. Under-ride accidents, in which a passenger car goes underneath a semi trailer are among the most deadly incidents on the road.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), roughly 423 people in passenger vehicles are killed annually when their vehicles strike the back of a large truck.
The large wheels of semis, when combined with the aerodynamic shape of modern cars form a disastrous combination. It's extremely easy for a passenger car to become wedged up under a semi trailers, often loaded with several tons of cargo.
While the hood of a car will fit underneath a semi trailer, the windshield will not. The passenger compartment is simply crushed.Protecting passenger cars
The trucking industry has taken steps to prevent underride accidents.
Since 1953, federal law has required some form of underride guard on trucks and trailers. These prevent vehicles from becoming lodged underneath their tailgate.
But in some cases, these gates can be absent or damaged to the point of dysfunction. Standards vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and between the United States and Canada.
In 2001, the IIHS conducted tests that found that underride guards failed, even in low-speed crashes. Just this year, however, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration considered a new standard for guards. New gates will require four supports across the horizontal bar, instead of just two.
Investigating An Underride Accident
When underride accidents occur, police investigators will often take note of any underride gate, or lack thereof. If you've been in a semi accident involving underride, don't leave it to police. Take pictures of the semi, including the tailgate and any underride gate.
Although America relies on semis for commerce, it's the responsibility of every American to protect himself against abuses by the trucking industry in cases of accidents, especially underride accidents.
For more information on semi accidents, including under-ride accidents, contact the law office of Dallas & Turner. Our experienced attorneys will walk you step-by-step through the process of making a claim. We can recover medical expenses, lost wages and money for pain and suffering.
To speak to a Dallas & Turner PLLC attorney immediately, please dial 859-630-0666. You can also write to us by using our free contact form.
Our clients come first, no exceptions. We look forward to working for you.
"If you or a loved one have been involved in a semi underride accident, we are here to help you and your family navigate this difficult time in your lives."James Ryan Turner, Injury Lawyer in Florence, KY