Unintentional Dangers Posed by Larger Vehicles and Trucks

For decades now, safety agencies have touted a larger car for individuals and families because “smaller cars provide less crash protection.” However, recent car accident statistics and research have shown that while larger vehicles such as SUVs and trucks can protect the driver and passengers in that vehicle, they may prove fatal for others on the roadway — particularly more vulnerable roadway users such as pedestrians and bicyclists.

The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) just announced that it is pursuing “a comprehensive approach to improve safety for everyone including pedestrians and bicyclists.” This came after an adverse social media reaction in which many questioned the agency’s post encouraging young people to drive larger cars because they would be better protected.

Why SUVs and Trucks Can Be Lethal

An article in the Slate explores this further and highlights issues with traffic safety advocacy, which in its zealousness to protect those inside vehicles, has neglected the safety of others using the roadway. While a bigger vehicle can be a rational choice for an individual or family, it doesn’t scale well for an entire nation. In fact, it has been a recipe for disaster in terms of pedestrian and bicycle accident numbers.

After decades of declines, U.S. roadway fatalities flattened and then began rising about 20 years ago. About 42,915 people died in traffic accidents during 2021 — which marked a 16-year high. Notably, the increase in fatalities coincided with the nation’s preference for SUVs and pickup trucks, which outsold cars in the U.S. in 2020. Since then, they have consistently surged in popularity.

Visibility has been an issue with SUVs and pickup trucks because of their size and height. Drivers in smaller cars often struggle to see over taller vehicles ahead. On the other hand, the higher position of the driver in an SUV or pickup truck tends to make it difficult for him or her to see pedestrians or bicycles, particularly when the vehicle is making a turn.

A 2015 federal study found that an SUV is two to three times more likely to kill a pedestrian compared to a car. Researchers have tied the rising number of SUVs on the road to an increase in pedestrian deaths, which hit a four-decade high in 2021. Bicyclist deaths rose 44% from 2010 to 2020. The size and weight of these larger vehicles also result in more severe injuries. The heavier weight of SUVs and trucks generates more deadly forces in a collision. Their tall front ends increase the likelihood of striking a person’s torso rather than his or her legs. These vehicles also have larger blind spots.

The Role of Driver Negligence (Carelessness)

In numerous instances, our New York personal injury lawyers have seen driver negligence (carelessness) being identified as the cause of car accidents. Impaired driving, distracted driving, failure to obey the rules of the road such as stopping for a red light or failing to yield the right of way to a pedestrian, are all factors in major injury crashes in the city. Speeding has also recently become a crucial factor in fatal car accidents in New York. Car accidents have the potential to result in major injuries including traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord trauma, broken bones, internal organ damage, etc.

Injured victims of negligent (careless) drivers can seek compensation from at-fault parties for damages including, but not limited to, medical expenses, lost wages and benefits, hospitalization, rehabilitation, permanent injuries, disabilities, past and future pain and suffering, etc. Families that have lost loved ones in car accidents can seek compensation for damages such as lost future income, medical and funeral costs, pain and suffering, etc.

Contacting an Experienced Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident or pedestrian accident, or if you have lost a loved one in an auto accident caused by a negligent (careless) driver, the experienced New York personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Kenneth A. Wilhelm can help you better understand your legal rights and options, and also fight hard to recover just compensation for you.

For over 51 years, our skilled attorneys have established a proven track record of helping injured victims. Our law firm recently recovered $5,600,000 for a bicyclist who was hit by a van, and $2,550,000 for another victim of a truck accident, and $3,000,000 for a pedestrian who was hit by a car, and $2,000,000 in a hit-and-run accident, and the full $1,000,000 insurance policy for a pedestrian who was hit by a truck, and $4,625,000 for a driver who was in a car and was hit by a van, and $2,500,000 for a man who fell through an improperly secured hole. Also, one of our clients obtained a verdict for $43,940,000 and another of our clients got a verdict for $23,500,000, both in medical malpractice cases.

Please contact us TOLL FREE 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-WORK-4-YOU (1-800-967-5496). WE CAN EVEN COME TO YOU. There is no attorneys’ fee unless we recover money for you. We can also help with personal injury, lead poisoning and medical malpractice cases in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, or Florida. If you have been seriously injured in any of the 50 U.S. states, please call us and we will try to help you with your case.

Other TOLL FREE phone numbers for us are:

1-800-RADIO-LAW, 1-888-WYPADEK, OR 1-800-LAS-LEYES

Please visit us at: www.WORK4YOULAW.com

Source: https://slate.com/business/2022/11/suv-size-truck-bloat-pedestrian-deaths.html

Leave a Reply