For years, deaths in motor vehicle accidents have been on the decline in the United States. But some Montana readers may be surprised to learn that this is no longer the case. According to preliminary estimates released recently by the National Safety Council, car accident deaths in 2016 were up six percent over the previous year. This follows a seven percent increase in 2015. That two-year increase in fatal accidents is the largest in over 50 years.
Drunk driving is a serious problem in Montana. For many people, the consequences are fatal. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drunk driving killed 932 people in the state in the ten-year period from 2003 through 2012. That averages out to about 93 deaths per year, and between seven and eight per month.
As we discussed in our last post, there are a number of ways in which negligence by semi-truck drivers and trucking companies can cause an accident. One form of negligence is a failure to properly secure the truck's cargo. A cargo that shifts while the truck is in motion, or that falls from the truck, can have disastrous consequences on a Montana highway.
A collision between a semi truck and a passenger vehicle is rarely an unavoidable event. Typically there is some form of negligence involved. This negligence can be on the part of the truck driver, the driver of the other vehicle, the truck company responsible for the rig's maintenance, or any combination of these parties.