Truck Accidents Statistics

2004 Truck Crash Deaths per 100,000 Population (100KP)*

Rank State Rate of Deaths – per 100KP
1 WYOMING 8.09
2 ARKANSAS 4.00
3 ALABAMA 3.60
4 WEST VIRGINIA 3.53
5 MISSISSIPPI 3.48
6 KANSAS 3.44
7 NEW MEXICO 3.31
8 OKLAHOMA 3.24
9 KENTUCKY 2.99
10 GEORGIA 2.81
11 NEBRASKA 2.80
12 MISSOURI 2.75
13 TENNESSEE 2.63
14 SOUTH CAROLINA 2.62
15 INDIANA 2.52
16 VERMONT 2.41
17 IOWA 2.37
18 SOUTH DAKOTA 2.33
19 NORTH CAROLINA 2.32
20, 21 LOUISIANA/ NORTH DAKOTA 2.21
22 DELAWARE 2.17
23 FLORIDA 2.17
24 ALASKA 2.14
25, 26 TEXAS/IDAHO 2.08
27 WISCONSIN 1.94
28 ARIZONA 1.85
29 MONTANA 1.73
30 OHIO 1.66
21 MAINE 1.59
32 PENNSYLVANIA 1.52
33 COLORADO 1.50
34 MARYLAND 1.49
35 OREGON 1.47
36 MINNESOTA 1.43
37 VIRGINIA 1.31
38 UTAH 1.30
39, 40 NEVADA/ILLINOIS 1.24
41 CALIFORNIA 1.16
42 NEW HAMPSHIRE 1.15
43 MICHIGAN 1.08
44 WASHINGTON 0.92
45 NEW JERSEY 0.91
46 DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA 0.90
47 NEW YORK 0.73
48 CONNECTICUT 0.71
49 MASSACHUSETTS 0.64
50 RHODE ISLAND 0.46
51 HAWAII 0.32

Source: 2004 Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), Special Data Run, National Center for Statistics and Analysis, October 2005

  • 5,374 people were killed in crashes involving large trucks in 1998, representing thirteen percent of all traffic fatalities. Of these, 78 percent were occupants of another vehicle, 14 percent were large truck occupants and 8 percent were non-occupants. An additional 123,000 people were injured in those crashes. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA)
  • In 1997, large trucks made up three percent of all registered vehicles and seven percent of all vehicle miles traveled. Yet, large trucks constituted nine percent of all vehicles involved in fatal crashes, and four percent of all vehicles involved in injury and property-damage-only crashes that year. (NHTSA, 1999)
  • In 1998, large trucks were more likely to be involved in a fatal multiple-vehicle crash-as opposed to a single-vehicle crash-than were passenger vehicles (84 percent of all large trucks in fatal crashes, compared with 62 percent of all passenger vehicles). (NHTSA, 1999)
  • One out of eight traffic crash fatalities in 1998 was the result of a collision involving a large truck. (NHTSA, 1999)
  • Most of the fatal crashes involving large trucks occur in rural areas (67 percent), during the day (68 percent) and on weekdays (80 percent). (NHTSA, 1999)
  • A loaded tractor-trailer requires 20-40 percent further stopping distance than a car. With an empty trailer, the discrepancy between the truck and the car is even greater. (NHTSA, 1999)
  • Of the trucks with out-of-service violations, more than one-third of them have problems with brakes. (Federal Highway Administration, 1998)
  • All new tractors and trailers are required to have anti-lock brakes. Anti-lock braking systems are effective in preventing wheel lock and loss of steering in emergency stopping, especially on wet roads.
  • Federal regulations allow drivers of large trucks to drive up to 16 hours a day. However, drivers under the regulations can compile 60 hours in less than five days by alternating ten hours of maximum permitted continuous driving with the minimum eight hours off duty. Surveys reveal that many drivers of large trucks violate the regulations on hours of service. Studies also show that driver fatigue plays a role in large truck crashes and that drivers are more likely to crash after many long hours of driving. (IIHS) The Department of Transportation is currently considering a revision of these hours-of-service rules.
  • Almost 30 percent of large truck drivers involved in fatal crashes in 1998 had at least one prior conviction for speeding, compared to slightly less than 20 percent of the passenger vehicle drivers in fatal crashes. (NHTSA, 1999)
  • Truck Safety in the U.S. and Maine is Moving in Reverse: Truck safety is not improving in the U.S. Data for 2005 (NHTSA) project that 5,226 people were killed in crashes involving large trucks, the third year in a row that big truck crash deaths continued to mount. About one of every 8 traffic crash fatalities each year is the result of a large truck collision.
  • Passenger Vehicle Occupants Die in Record Numbers in Crashes with Big Trucks: In two-vehicle crashes between a small passenger vehicle and a large truck, 98 percent of the resulting deaths are the occupants of the small passenger vehicles.
  • The new study’s reanalysis of the data in the first report (using data on fatal crashes from 1993 to 1999) confirmed its results: Approximately 20% of fatal crashes involve at least one driver who did not have a valid license at the time of the crash. These data also show a wide variation across states in the proportion of drivers involved in fatal crashes who lacked a valid license-from a low of 6.1% in Maine to a high of 23.1% in New Mexico.

Do I Have a Case?

If you’d like to speak with an attorney, fill out the form below or call us at (415) 688-2176

    • Please enter your name.
    • Please enter your phone number.
      This isn't a valid phone number.
    • This isn't a valid email address.
      Please enter your email address.
    • Please make a selection.
    • Please enter a message.