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Safety technology in trucks could save lives

Every year, many people are killed in crashes involving large trucks in Illinois and around the country. The size and weight differences between commercial trucks and passenger vehicles make trucking accidents much more dangerous than other types of collisions. Large truck crashes are likely to result in serious injuries or fatalities to occupants of other vehicles.

Despite the dangers of large trucks sharing the roads with smaller passenger vehicles, little has been done by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to make trucks safer. Forward collision avoidance technology and automatic emergency braking are both available, but the NHTSA has not mandated their installation in large trucks.

The National Transportation Safety Board has repeatedly recommended that the NHTSA mandate the installation of safety technologies in large trucks that would reduce the likelihood that they would cause accidents with smaller vehicles. Despite receiving 10 recommendations from the NTSB to include the technologies in large trucks that date back to the 1990s, the NHTSA has failed to act or to explain why. While large trucks may not have these technologies installed, the automobile industry has stated that they will be standard in all new cars by 2022.

The installation of collision avoidance technology and automatic emergency braking on large trucks could help to prevent many truck accidents and to save lives. Unfortunately, the NHTSA does not seem to be in any hurry to mandate these technologies. People who are seriously injured in truck accidents or who have lost their loved ones might want to consult with personal injury lawyers who are experienced in handling trucking collisions. Trucking carriers and their insurance companies often defend injury and wrongful death claims aggressively, and experienced attorneys may be able to anticipate the defenses so that they may build a stronger case on behalf of their clients.

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