Trucks and trailers were involved in fatal accidents less frequently in 2008, according to figures released by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA).
The statistics, previously released by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) show the fatality rate in 2008 declined 12.3%. Truck-related fatalities occurred at a rate of 1.86 per 100 million miles in 2008, compared with 2.12 per 100 million miles in 2007. This decline marks the largest year-to-year drop ever and the fifth consecutive year the fatality rate has improved.Since new hours-of-service regulations took effect in 2005, the truck-involved fatality rate has come down more than 20% and is at its lowest since the U.S. Department of Transportation began keeping those records in 1975. The fatality rate has declined more than 66% since 1975.
Persons injured in large truck crashes went from 44.4 per 100 million miles to 39.6, an 11% reduction. Injury rates are based on the FHWA’s figures that report vehicle miles traveled by truck increased in 2008 to 227.45 billion miles from 227.06 billion in 2007. During that same time, NHTSA reports that the actual number of truck-involved injuries fell to 101,000 from 90,000.