TRUCKS IN RURAL INJURY ACCIDENTS

DATA ARE PROVIDED ON 970 OCCUPANTS OF 680 TRUCKS INVOLVED IN INJURY-PRODUCING ACCIDENTS. DATA WERE OBTAINED THROUGH THE ACIR INTERSTATE PROGRAM, THE AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSOCIATION AND THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION. THREE TYPES OF TRUCKS ARE EXAMINED. PICKUPS, OTHER SINGLE UNIT TRUCKS AND TRACTOR-TRAILER COMBINATIONS. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS ARE: (1) THE MEAN AGE OF TRUCK DRIVERS WAS SLIGHTLY HIGHER THAN THAT OF AUTOMOBILE DRIVERS. (2) IN GENERAL, TRUCKS WERE INVOLVED IN SINGLE VEHICLE ACCIDENTS LESS FREQUENTLY THAN CARS. (3) TIME OF OCCURRENCE OF ACCIDENTS WAS SIMILAR FOR CARS AND PICKUPS, WHICH HAD THE MAJORITY OF THEIR ACCIDENTS IN LATE AFTERNOON. TRACTOR- TRAILER-ACCIDENTS WERE MOST FREQUENT IN THE EARLY MORNING AND EARLY AFTERNOON. (4) PICKUP TRUCKS MOST FREQUENTLY COLLIDED WITH CARS WHILE OTHER SINGLE UNIT TRUCKS MOST OFTEN COLLIDED WITH TRUCKS OR OVERTURNED WITH OR WITHOUT COLLISION. (5) THE PERCENTAGE OF VEHICLES TRAVELING AT SPEEDS OF 60 MPH OR MORE, PRIOR TO THE ACCIDENT, DECREASED AS VEHICLE SIZE INCREASED, RANGING FROM 26.5 PERCENT FOR CARS TO 6.6 PERCENT FOR TRACTOR-TRAILERS. (6) DOOR OPENING OCCURRED IN 40 PERCENT OF THE TRUCKS STUDIED, AND DRIVER EJECTION RATES RANGED FROM 17 TO 19 PERCENT OF ALL DRIVERS. IN 1960-64 CARS, 10.7 PERCENT OF THE DRIVERS WERE EJECTED. (7) DANGEROUS AND FATAL INJURIES WERE ABOUT FOUR TIMES AS FREQUENT AMONG EJECTED OCCUPANTS AS AMONG NON-EJECTED OCCUPANTS. (8) FIRE OCCURRED IN 2.6 PERCENT OF THE TRUCK ACCIDENTS REPORTED AS COMPARED WITH .4 PERCENT IN SIMILAR AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENT DATA. (9) LOAD SHIFT WAS REPORTED AS A CAUSE OF ONE ACCIDENT AND AS A CAUSE OF INJURY FOR TEN DRIVERS. LOAD SHIFT OCCURED IN 6.2 PERCENT OF THE SINGLE UNIT TRUCKS (EXCLUDING PICKUPS) AND IN 21.6 PERCENT OF THE TRACTOR-TRAILER ACCIDENTS. (10) INJURY WAS MORE FREQUENT AND MORE SEVERE AMONG DRIVERS OF THE LARGER VEHICLES. (11) EJECTION AND THE STEERING ASSEMBLY WERE AMONG THE LEADING SOURCES OF INJURY IN ALL THREE TRUCK TYPES. THE DATA SUGGEST THAT IMPROVEMENTS TO REDUCE DOOR OPEINING AND ASSOCIATED EJECTION COULD REDUCE INJURY. USE OF RESTRAINT SYSTEMS AND IMPROVED INTERIOR SAFETY DESIGN ALSO WOULD BE HELPFUL BECAUSE THE HIGHER SEVERITY OF INJURY IN THE LARGER TRUCKS SUGGESTS A LESS "FORGIVING" INTERIOR ENVIRONMENT. PREVENTION OF FIRES, WHICH ARE MORE FREQUENT IN TRUCKS THAN IN AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENTS, IS NEEDED. THIS MAY REQUIRE FURTHER STUDY TO DETERMINE CAUSES OF FIRES. METHODS OF PREVENTING LOAD SHIFT WOULD ALSO REDUCE INJURY FREQUENCY. /SRIS/

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Rept No Cal 6901-G129, 27 PP, 2 FIG, 19 TAB, 10 REF
  • Corporate Authors:

    Cornell Aeronautical Laboratory

    Automotive Crash Injury Research
    Buffalo, NY  USA 
  • Authors:
    • ROBINSON, H
    • KIHLBERG, J K
    • GARRETT, J W
  • Publication Date: 1969-7

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00220897
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Nat Safety Council Safety Res Info Serv
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 26 1970 12:00AM