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AAA study highlights the benefits of truck safety technology

The lives of 500 road users in Ohio and around the country could be saved each year if all tractor-trailers were fitted with the latest safety equipment and systems according to a study released recently by the Automobile Association of America's Foundation for Traffic Safety. AAA researchers came to this conclusion after studying the impact that lane departure alerts, air disc brakes, video-based monitoring technology and automatic emergency braking systems would have on road safety. They based their casualty estimates on figures gathered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 2015 when 400,000 truck crashes claimed more than 4,000 lives and caused roughly 116,000 injuries.

Video monitoring systems would have the most profound influence on road safety according to the AAA report. The researchers claim that 63,000 accidents would be prevented each year and 293 lives would be saved if every commercial vehicle in America was fitted with this technology. While most commercial vehicle manufacturers and operators have switched to air disc braking systems, the AAA research team say that the annual truck accident death toll would be reduced by 37 if all trucks were equipped with them.

Two of the safety systems studied by the AAA team are particularly effective at preventing truck accidents that are caused by distracted or fatigued commercial vehicle drivers. The AAA study suggests that lane departure warnings and automatic emergency brakes could prevent 11,666 crashes, 4095 injuries and 170 fatalities each year.

Modern truck safety technology is highly sophisticated and must be properly maintained, and commercial vehicle operators may face civil sanctions when accidents are caused by inadequate maintenance or poorly trained technicians. Establishing negligence in truck accident lawsuits is sometimes challenging for even experienced personal injury attorneys, but defective parts, inexperienced mechanics and a generally irresponsible attitude toward the safety of others could be difficult for logistics companies to conceal.

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