Accidents Involving Tractor-Trailers More Likely Caused by Car Drivers, Canadian Report Finds

Jan. 1, 2000
The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has released its annual report on road safety in Ontario, and the results (which are for 1997) again show that tractor-trailers

The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has released its annual report on road safety in Ontario, and the results (which are for 1997) again show that tractor-trailers and truck drivers with a Class A license are the safest vehicles and drivers on the road.

Results show that car drivers are more likely to have been driving improperly, drinking, or operating cars with mechanical defects when they are involved in accidents with tractor-trailers. This has prompted the Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) to unveil a public education and awareness campaign on how to share the road safely with big rigs.

The latest report shows that tractor-trailers represented only 3 percent of the vehicles involved in all reportable collisions in 1997- down from 3.2 percent in 1996. The number of fatalities from accidents involving tractor-trailers remained constant at 91, but the number of personal injury and property damage accidents decreased by 1.7 percent in 1997. In total, tractor-trailers represent 1.2 percent of the vehicles Involved in all personal injury collisions and 1.7 percent of the vehicles involved in all property damage collisions.

Tractor-trailer drivers with a Class A license were deemed to be driving properly-or not at fault-in 71.6 percent of the fatal accidents in which they were involved. By comparison, automobile drivers involved in fatal collisions with trucks were found to be driving properly in 45.4 percent of accidents. Truck drivers continue to be the least likely to be drinking and driving. While 24 percent of automobile drivers involved in fatal accidents with tractor-trailers had been drinking, alcohol was a factor for 1 percent of truck drivers.

For all the attention truck mechanical defects have been garnering in the media, defective equipment was found to be a factor in only 1 percent of fatal accidents involving tractor trailers in 1997 (The number was 2.2 percent in 1996). Mechanical defects in cars involved in fatal accidents with trucks were cited as a factor in 3.4 percent of the cases.

The report also corroborates other research recently compiled by MTO that shows that between 1988 and 1997, fatalities involving trucks dropped by 20.5 percent, even though the number of trucks (Class A and D) increased by 8 percent over the same period. MTO also has determined that based on miles traveled, the collision rate for Class A trucks has declined from 7.9 per million kilometers traveled to 5.4 million kilometers in 1997.

About the Author

The Refrigerated Transporter Staff

Sponsored Recommendations

Reducing CSA Violations & Increasing Safety With Advanced Trailer Telematics

Keep the roads safer with advanced trailer telematics. In this whitepaper, see how you can gain insights that lead to increased safety and reduced roadside incidents—keeping drivers...

80% Fewer Towable Accidents - 10 Key Strategies

After installing grille guards on all of their Class 8 trucks, a major Midwest fleet reported they had reduced their number of towable accidents by 80% post installation – including...

Proactive Fleet Safety: A Guide to Improved Efficiency and Profitability

Each year, carriers lose around 32.6 billion vehicle hours as a result of weather-related congestion. Discover how to shift from reactive to proactive, improve efficiency, and...

Tackling the Tech Shortage: Lessons in Recruiting Talent and Reducing Turnover

Discover innovative strategies for recruiting and retaining tech talent in the trucking industry at our April 16th webinar, where experts will share insights on competitive pay...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of FleetOwner, create an account today!