The NTSB is an independent federal government agency that investigates the nation’s catastrophic trucking crashes and those in other modes of transportation. It annually provides a detailed report on fatal transportation accidents, and its 2013 report, issued February 2015, is the latest such effort.
The findings issued by the NTSB for 2013 transportation fatalities are a mixed bag of good and bad news.
• The total number of 2013 U.S. deaths from road, rail, and aviation accidents was 34,678
• Driving related deaths in the United States dropped about 3 percent, to 32,719 in 2013. In 2012, the number of people who died in motor vehicle accidents was 33,782.
• The number of people who died in accidents involving large and medium trucks dipped slightly, by about .09 percent
• Deaths from commercial bus accidents jumped 23 percent in 2013
• Railroad deaths increased 6 percent in 2013 over the previous year
In a news release announcing these numbers, Christopher Hart acting chairman of the NTSB, remarked that while the report contained some welcome news, “…much work needs to be done, because 35,000 deaths is very troubling.”
The number of deaths from trucking accidents remains especially worrisome, even with the miniscule decline in 2013. While efforts to curb some factors that cause fatal truck accidents have been enacted, much of the negligent behavior remains, including:
• Unsafe trucking companies ignoring proper maintenance of their fleets
• Improperly loading or overloading trucks
If a family member died in a crash involving a truck, you may want to visit with an attorney experienced in dealing with trucking companies, who can determine those responsible and pursue just compensation for your loss.
The choice of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertising.