NHTSA Urged to Require Collision-Avoidance System on Trucks to Reduce Accidents

Truck accidents cause many injuries and fatalities in California and across the country. According to California Office of Traffic Safety, there were 235 fatalities and 5,092 injuries in trucker crashes in California in 2012.

Several nonprofit safety groups—the Truck Safety Coalition, the Center for Auto Safety, Advocates for Auto and Highway Safety, and Road Safe America—are asking the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) to require new trucks to include F-Cam technology to help prevent accidents. This technology employs radars and sensors to alert the trucker to a collision and to apply brakes if a crash is imminent. These groups want the safety system to be required for all new trucks over 10,000 pounds—almost all commercial trucks on the state’s roads and freeways.

How F-Cam Technology Can Reduce Accidents

Truck manufacturers offer some type of F-Cam technology on newer model trucks, but there is no federal regulation of these safety systems or requirement that trucking companies purchase them. The nonprofit groups petitioning NHTSA believe that new trucks should be required to have the following two F-Cam systems:

  • Forward Collision Warning. This system warns the trucker when he is getting too close to another vehicle that has stopped or is traveling very slowly, giving the trucker time to stop.
  • Collision Mitigation Braking. This system automatically applies the brakes if it senses an impending accident and the trucker fails to manually apply the brakes.

Although available as an option on newer truck models, the safety groups petitioning NHTSA believe that only three percent of the three million trucks on our roads employ any collision or braking safety system. The trucking companies are choosing not to purchase these safety options due to the cost, sacrificing human lives instead.

These forward collision warning and collision-mitigation braking systems would help prevent rear-end collisions. Cars are particularly at risk of being rear-ended by a truck when stopped or slowing to stop and in construction zones, where fatalities are high. These safety groups believe that requiring new trucks to utilize regulated F-Cam systems could prevent 6,400 truck accidents annually.

Even when a truck hits a car from behind at a slow sped, motorists can suffer very serious injuries—like traumatic brain injury, paralysis, or organ damage—or death. F-Cam systems could prevent some of these deadly trucker accidents. Until such rules are implemented, motorists will continue to be injured in accidents caused by truckers and may be entitled to compensation from the truck driver and his or her employer.

Were you injured in an accident where the truck driver was at fault? Our compassionate and knowledgeable legal team is here to help. Call us today at 800-989-6385 or start an online chat now to begin learning about the compensation you could be entitled to.