The latest controversy in the trucking industry is whether or not Congress is going to approve a bill that will allow 33-foot long trailers to operate on highways. This is a five-foot increase from the standard 28 feet. While safety advocates believe this will increase the risk of serious truck accidents, supporters of the bill argue that it will increase productivity, reduce the amount of miles driven and have less of an impact on the environment.
An issue that regularly comes up in the trucking industry, and has been well-documented in several studies, is the notoriously long workweek and the incidence of exhausted drivers behind the wheel. The combination of drowsy truck drivers and longer trucks can have deadly consequences. The “Twin 33s,” or trucks that are hauling two trailers that are 33 feet long, are more difficult to drive, are more affected by strong winds due to their larger surface area and take longer to come to a complete stop. In fact, loaded tractor-trailers generally take 20-40 percent farther to stop than cars, and this percentage is even larger when trucks are operating on wet, slippery roads or if the truck’s brakes are not properly maintained. This can lead to serious truck accidents on busy highways.
The main argument in support of this bill is increased efficiency. According to a spokesman from the American Trucking Association, the 33-foot trailers would save 6.6 million trips, eliminate 1.3 billion miles driven and reduce carbon emissions by 4.4 billion pounds annually. The size extension would result in an 18 percent in cubic capacity.
Most Americans do not support these changes to truck safety because they know that an accidentinvolving a car and a truck often results in the driver of the car either seriously injured or killed. A well-known example of an accident like this is the 2014 crash involving comedian Tracy Morgan. Safety advocates point to this accident as an example of why larger trucks are hazardous to other drivers. As a motorist on a highway, it can be very stressful when a truck with double trailers passes by you. Considering these larger trucks are equivalent to an eight-story building tilted on its side, it can be unsettling, and even dangerous, knowing that a truck of that size seems to be barreling past you on a busy highway.
Philadelphia Truck Accident Lawyers at Galfand Berger Represent Victims of Accidents Involving “Super-Sized” Trucks
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured or killed in a truck accident involving an oversized truck, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Philadelphia truck accident Lawyers at Galfand Berger will closely examine every aspect of your case, determine the negligent party and hold them accountable for your injuries. Our offices are conveniently located in Center City, Philadelphia and we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Call us today at 1-800-222-USWA (8792) or contact us online at www.galfandberger.com for a free consultation.