Driving near a big rig truck can be nerve-wracking even for experienced drivers. Whether you are attempting to pass one truck or feeling walled in by multiple big rigs, trucks can be intimidating. While most truck drivers and trucking companies are conscientious and safety-minded, we cannot say that there is no reason to be afraid. Big rig crashes injure and kill thousands each year. Our Oakland truck crash injury lawyer is prepared to fight for the injured and for the families of those who die in truck accidents in Northern California and the neighboring regions.
Driver Injured in Fire Following Big Rig Accident on I-580 Near Livermore
CBS SF reports that a truck driver was injured after a crash between two big rigs caused a vehicle fire. An official with the California Highway Patrol reports that the collision and resulting fire occurred on Interstate Highway 580 in unincorporated Alameda Country, near the North Flynn Road ramp east of Livermore. The accident occurred in the eastbound lanes shortly before noon on Monday. One driver was airlifted to the hospital with burn injuries. Flames also caused a small grass fire, but fire crews were able to extinguish that blaze. Lane closures were reported to last approximately two hours.
Injuries and Deaths in Big Rig Crashes by the Numbers
The National Highway Safety Administration (“NHTSA”) defines a “large truck” as any vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating in excess of 10,000 pounds. According to the Large Trucks Safety Facts sheet released by the NHTSA in June 2015, there were 3,964 fatalities tied to large truck crashes in 2013, only a slight change from 3,944 large truck crash deaths in 2012. In 2013, 71% of those killed in large truck crashes were occupants of other vehicles, 17% of the deaths involved large truck occupants, and 11% of those killed were not in a vehicle (e.g., pedestrians, motorcyclists, bicyclists, etc.) at the time of the crash. Notably, the number of non-occupants killed in large truck crashes jumped 13% from 2012 to 2013.
The NHTSA also reports that an estimated 95,000 people were injured in accidents involving large trucks in 2013. This represents a 9% drop from the year prior. Of the injured individuals in 2013, 72% were occupants of vehicles other than large truck, 25% were large truck occupants, and 2% were non-occupants.
Characteristics of Large Truck Drivers Involved in Fatal Crashes
Notably, large truck drivers involved in fatal crashes are much less likely to have an elevated blood alcohol level than drivers of other vehicles involved in fatal accidents. In 2013, only 2% of large truck drivers involved in fatal crashes had a BAC over the legal limit while 23% of passenger car drivers involved in fatal collisions had a BAC above the .08 limit. However, large truck drivers involved in fatal accidents were somewhat more likely than their passenger car driver counterparts to have a prior record of a recorded crash (15% to 12.8%) and slightly more likely to have a prior speeding ticket (17% to 16%). Eighty percent of fatal large truck crashes involved multiple-vehicles (as opposed to single-vehicle incidents) while only 58% of fatal passenger car accidents involved multiple vehicles.
A Northern California Law Firm for Truck Crash Victims
If you or a loved one was hurt in a large truck crash in Oakland or elsewhere in Northern California, Attorney Greg Brod may be able to help you obtain the compensation you need and deserve. We have offices of our truck crash law firm in Oakland, San Francisco, and Santa Rosa. Please call to arrange a no-charge consultation. Most injury cases are handled on a contingency fee so you only pay us if you get money.
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(Image of truck exterior by Mark Holloway, Image of truck interior by Connie Ma)