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Semi roadcheck exposes safety concerns

Anyone driving down Interstate 35 is used to a steady stream of semis with deliveries in tow. Like other road safety issues, it’s such a common occurrence that most drivers forget about the inherent dangers cars face in sharing the road with much larger vehicles. Semis can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, and they need more time to stop and more space to turn. Given the laws of physics, if a car collides with a truck, it can be catastrophic.

Thankfully, serious car-semi accidents are not a common occurrence—but it does happen, and significant injuries are often a result. Truck drivers carry a regulated commercial driver’s license in effort to improve highway safety. Trucks are also subject to regular inspections, including the annual the annual Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s International Roadcheck this June.

The 2017 inspection shows startling results. Almost 2,000 Texas trucks—nearly one-quarter of those inspected—were taken out of service. It’s roughly a one percent increase from last year’s inspections. In addition, 225 drivers were cited for violations. While semi-car accidents are less frequent than other auto accidents, the numbers illustrate major safety concerns.

In case of an accident

As a reminder, there are certain steps you should always take if you’re involved in an accident:

  1. Seek medical attention, even if injuries appear minor at first
  2. Report the collision to the authorities
  3. If you are able, document any injuries and damages
  4. Consult with an attorney as soon as possible

Details and diagnosis

In the aftermath of a collision, your body is running on adrenaline and emotion. It’s easy to overlook details, damages and even injuries. Safety is always the top concern, but you’ll also need to create a clear record of what happened. Speak with first responders and police to ensure an accurate report, and try to create your own record as well. Use a cellular phone to photograph the scene, and visit a medical professional as soon as possible.

Even if you don’t feel immediate pains, a doctor visit provides clear documentation of your health in case something surfaces later on. While bruises, cuts and broken bones are easy to identify, soft tissue damage and brain injury are two of the most common car accident injuries. These are not surface injuries that you can see, and a doctor will help to diagnose and treat them in a timely manner.

Timing helps to heal and document

Time is essential to medical recovery. It is also important for legal assistance. An experienced attorney will help to document injuries, including less tangible effects that take a toll on daily life, such as lost income, time away from work and emotional damages.

Semi traffic is a significant portion of our highway traffic, and bigger vehicles pose a serious injury risk if there is an accident. The Roadcheck data shows the threat. It’s important to know what to do, just in case.

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