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Impact of large truck crashes on Texas families

Federal transportation statistics show that a disproportionate number of large trucks are involved in fatal motor vehicle crashes. Just 4 percent of all registered vehicles nationwide in 2012 were large trucks. However, the largest, heaviest vehicles on the road were involved in 8 percent of all fatalities.

Texas is not immune from injuries and deaths caused by truck accidents. More than 540 fatal large trucks crashes were reported statewide in 2012. The percentage of commercial truck fatalities was over 14 percent of the total for the entire country.

The latest figures show Bexar County had 17 commercial vehicle accidents in 2014, resulting in an equal number of deaths. More than five dozen people suffered incapacitating injuries in 2,330 large truck accidents countywide. Over 200 victims had less serious injuries.

Hundreds of thousands of large trucks crash each year across the country. The death toll from these collisions in 2012 exceeded 3,900 -- more than 100,000 injuries were attributed to commercial vehicle accidents.

Technological advances in vehicle safety and campaigns to promote safe driving had no effect on these numbers. Large truck fatalities rose 4 percent and injuries shot up 18 percent between 2011 and 2012.

Who gets hurt when these massive vehicles crash? In 2012, the majority of victims who died were not traveling inside commercial vehicles. Seventy-three percent of fatality victims were operators and occupants of smaller vehicles, while another 10 percent involved non-occupants like pedestrians and bicyclists.

Victims who survive large truck accidents commonly have severe injuries. In many cases, an individual requires long-term medical care or is permanently disabled. Families scramble to rally around an incapacitated loved one and try to cope with enormous expenses associated with ongoing treatment, along with the victim's lost wages.

Fortunately, personal injury and wrongful death attorneys can help victims and families appeal to Texas civil courts for relief. Negligence claims can result in damages to lessen these hardships.

Source: Texas Department of Transportation, "Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) Involved Crashes and Injuries by County," accessed July 02, 2015

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