The U.S. Department of Transportation analyzed data collected by the American Trucking Association indicates a drop in the rate of truck-involved fatalities, decreasing by 40.6% over the past decade.
“America’s trucking industry has invested billions to improve safety and that commitment is paying off,” said ATA president and CEO Bill Graves.
The information collected shows a 2.78% fatality decline from 2013 and a 4.76% drop over the past two years.
“The short-term decline is welcome news, but the important figure is the long-term trend,” Graves said. “Short-term changes, whether they’re increases or declines, can be blips – and just like you shouldn’t track your 401k on a daily basis, they shouldn’t be the primary lens truck safety is viewed through. The long-term trend – in this case, a more than 40% improvement – is of paramount importance.”
The ATA analyzed miles travelled data from the Federal Highway Administration and highway fatality information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and truck-involved fatality rates were 1.40 per 100 million miles travelled, falling for the second straight year. There were 3,903 truck-involved fatalities in 2014, with the number of miles travelled increasing to more than 279 billion.
The study only includes those involving large trucks and does not reflect causation.
“Our industry has worked hard, and invested in technology and training to improve highway safety not just for our drivers, but for all motorists,” said ATA executive vice-president for national advocacy Dave Osiecki. “And while there is more work to do, it is gratifying to see those efforts paying off in safer roads for all of us.”