Supporting Semi Truck Speed Limiters Will Help Avoid Accidents
Last year, five Georgia Southern nursing students were killed in an accident nearby on I-16 involving an out-of-control tractor trailer truck. The driver, who was at the end of his shift and admitted to texting, slammed into the student’s two cars at a high rate of speed. The driver, who walked away from the accident, has just been indicted for vehicular homicide, reckless driving, following too closely, and other criminal activity. The trucking company was also indicted on five counts, including vehicular homicide.
Georgia Senator Isakson wants to slow down those trucks
Inspired by this incident, Senator Johnny Isakson wants to pass a national law that limits the speed of semi trucks to 65 miles per hour in order to help prevent similar accidents. Buzzell, Welsh & Hill supports truck speed governors for two simple yet important reasons.
- Higher speeds lead to more accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration confirms that speeding is one of the most prevalent factors contributing to traffic crashes. Trucks take much longer to stop, so it’s more important for truck drivers need to stick within posted speed limits. If they can’t do that on their own, speed governors will ensure our safety.
- Semi trucks are more dangerous than cars. When a 5-ton tractor trailer collides with a car, the chance for a serious injury is much greater than a car-to-car collision. Truck-related deaths are on the rise, with over 3,500 truck wrecks killing nearly 4,000 people 2013. We can use this speed limiting technology to keep truck drivers operating safely.
Jed Hill, a partner at Buzzell, Welsh & Hill, commented, “We’ve represented clients who have been involved in terrible truck accidents where speed was a major factor. Speed limiters that cap semi trucks at 65 miles per hour will lead to safer roads.”
Research confirms big benefits from speed governors
Research from the American Transportation Research Institute points out that speed governors may also have an impact on the overall “safety culture” of a trucking company. Josh Carroll, a partner at Buzzell, Welsh & Hill, added, “We’ve handled cases where speed is only the tip of the iceberg in a semi truck accident. We see where profits are more of a priority than extensive driver background checks and driver safety awareness.”
By slowing down drivers and increasing the trucking companies’ focus on safety, this law will save lives. Until this law is passed, it’s important to be very careful around tractor trailer trucks on the road. If you are involved in a serious accident with a semi truck, remember to do the following:
- Call 911. Get the police to secure the scene as quickly as possible.
- Take care of your injuries. Don’t be a hero. If you’re injured, get in the ambulance, get treatment and follow your doctor’s orders.
- Call us. Before you talk to any insurance companies or trucking companies, you need to talk to an attorney.
Involved in a semi truck accident? Contact the Macon and middle Georgia attorneys at Buzzell, Welsh & Hill today for a free consultation.