Experts Predict More Trucks on the Road in 2021

Posted in Car Accidents,truck accidents on January 20, 2021

The trucking industry expects to rebound in 2021, including a strong year for freight and equipment sales. That means more trucks on the roads. More trucks on the road means more motor vehicle accidents.  If you are involved in a Georgia truck accident, a Georgia truck accident lawyer is who you should be calling.

Truck loadings are expected to increase more than 5% this year after a decline of about 4% in 2020. Flatbed trucks at more than 6% and tankers at 3% will see the largest increases. Plus, there’s a demand for more drivers. Many new for-hire trucking companies have also been established.

Freight Demand Means More Truck Orders

High freight demand will continue through this year and into 2022, experts say.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a great impact on the trucking industry. Trucking volumes, rates, and employment have been on the rise since the summer of last year—rebounding rapidly from an early pandemic slump. For example, there’s been a 60% annual increase in sales by third party sellers on Amazon’s marketplace last year, and the boom in e-commerce continues into 2021. This great demand from consumers means that manufacturers must move to replenish inventory, and are working their supply chains more than ever.

Trucking Statistics

Trucks move about 72.5% of the nation’s freight by weight. There are 36.9 million trucks registered and used for business purposes in 2018. There’s been a 2.6% increase in Class 8 trucks (including tractors and straight trucks) from 2018 to 2019. There are now nearly 4 million in operation.

Class 8 are the really big rigs, those with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating over 33,001 (GVWR, the maximum loaded weight of the semi and trailer). Class 8 include cement trucks and dump trucks, as well as tractor-trailers like Freightliners, Peterbilts, and Kenworths. Moreover, the U.S. Department of Transportation says that, as of April 2020, the number of for-hire carriers on file with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) totaled 928,647.

Again, that’s a lot of drivers and big rigs on the road. And it means more accidents.

What are the Common Causes of Semi Truck Accidents?

In 2018, there were more than 33,500 fatal automobile crashes nationwide. Of that number, nearly 4,500 were accidents caused by semi trucks which resulted in nearly 5,000 fatalities. Most of semi truck accidents in Georgia are caused by the following:

  • Careless or reckless driving;
  • Alcohol and drug use;
  • Distracted driving;
  • Driver fatigue;
  • Improper maintenance or defective equipment;
  • Speeding and other moving violations;
  • Violation of state trucking laws and FMCSA regulations;
  • Driver inexperience and a lack of training; and
  • Improper loading.

It’s critical to note that the fatality rate for tractor trailer-involved crashes nationwide was 45% higher than the overall fatality rate for all motor vehicle crashes in the latest data. Again, with more trucks on Georgia roadways, there’s a greater chance of an accident involving a big rig.

Takeaway

Semi trucks traveled 304.9 billion miles in 2018. Those hours on the road mean you’re at a greater risk for an accident involving tractor-trailer, which can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. Because of this, the impact of a semi-truck is much greater than that of a passenger vehicle. There will be more damage to the vehicle involved, as well as serious injuries.

If you or a family member has been injured in a tractor-trailer accident, contact our experienced Atlanta truck accident lawyers . We treat every case, regardless of size, as if it is our most important case.