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Road Safe America urges use of speed limiters on big rigs

Federal data shows that from 2009 to 2017, all but six states saw an increase in the number of large truck crash fatalities. Texas saw the highest number in 2017, followed by California, Florida, Georgia and Pennsylvania. Texas also had the fourth highest percentage increase in truck crash deaths during that eight-year period (the top three being Washington, Idaho and Colorado).

One interesting point is that most of these states have a truck speed limit of 70 mph or more. This is an unsafe speed for any vehicles weighing 80,000 pounds or more, according to Road Safe America. The highway safety non-profit, after studying this federal data, is now encouraging truck fleet owners to consider vehicle safety technology.

First is automatic emergency braking, which can alert drivers to stationary or slow-moving objects and apply the brakes when drivers do not. Second, the non-profit especially recommends the setting of speed limiters to 65 mph. This can give truckers more time to avoid crashes and reduce the severity of those crashes that do arise.

A recent national survey found that 80 percent of respondents were in support of a speed limiter mandate. In 2016, NTHSA and the FMCSA jointly proposed such a mandate, but it never gained traction. Speed limiters have been built into big rigs since the 1990s and are already required in many countries.

Speeding continues to be a frequent factor in trucking accidents. Unfortunately, it's often the trucker who is to blame. The victim of trucker negligence can consult with a lawyer about the possibility of filing a claim against the trucking company. If successful, a claim could cover past and future medical expenses, the income lost during the physical recovery and much more. The lawyer can hire third parties for the gathering of proof before heading to the negotiation table.

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