When you're driving on the highway, have you ever sped up to pass a large truck? If there are multiple lanes of traffic moving in each direction, it's often possible to maintain your current speed and pass a semi-truck. However, many people want to get past large trucks as quickly as possible.
The size disparity between our passenger cars and large trucks can be frightening. Truckers have large blind spots, making it difficult for them to see us when we're driving beside them. Finally, if a trucker swerved or lost control of his or her vehicle, the chances of that truck accident being fatal are high.
Now, a new government proposal is geared toward making large trucks and buses safer. If the legislation passes, manufacturers would need to equip large trucks and buses with safety systems that help prevent rollover accidents through computer-controlled braking.
The proposal came from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration with the goal of increasing stability and control and reducing the most dangerous accidents on the road.
If the new safety system is enacted, it would help prevent trucks and buses from skidding across icy or slick roads, and it could help keep motorists safe when trucks are forced to swerve to avoid hitting unexpected objects in the road. The individual wheel braking system helps counter over- and under-steering, which could help prevent 56 percent of rollover crashes each year and 14 percent of loss-of-control crashes.
Truck and bus rollover crashes are the deadliest type of accident. If the technology exists to drastically reduce those accidents, what is stopping manufacturers from installing it?
Source: Kentucky.com, "Gov't proposal aimed at bus, truck rollovers," Joan Lowy, Associated Press, May 16, 2012