Truck Accident Statistics in Mississippi

Stethoscope on Mississippi truck accident statistics charts, highlighting the health impacts and trends in truck-related incidents.

Mississippi’s roads and highways are vital for commerce. Still, the presence of large commercial trucks poses significant risks to the safety of all road users. Large truck accidents can lead to devastating consequences, including severe injuries, fatalities, and extensive property damage.

Understanding the Scope of the Problem

Overall Accident Rates

According to the National Safety Council, large trucks account for about 5 percent of registered vehicles on the road but are involved in 9 percent of fatal crashes. This disproportionate representation underscores the severe consequences of accidents involving these massive trucks.

The NSC also reports that 117,300 large trucks were involved in crashes resulting in injuries, marking a 12% increase from 2020 to 2021. Since 2016, the number of trucks involved in injury crashes has risen by 15 percent.

 The human toll of large truck accidents is devastating. In 2021, nearly 5,800 people lost their lives in crashes involving large trucks. This represents a 17% increase from 2020 and a 47% rise over the past 10 years. The majority of those killed in large-truck crashes are occupants of other vehicles (72%), followed by truck occupants (17%) and non-occupants, such as pedestrians and bicyclists (11%).

According to the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT), there were 690 fatalities on the state’s roadways in 2016. These alarming figures underscore the urgent need to address road safety, particularly regarding large truck accidents.

Fatality Rates

Truck accidents often result in the loss of life. In Mississippi, there were 108 large truck crash fatalities in a recent year. This translates to 31 fatal truck crashes for every one million people in the state, ranking Mississippi as the state with the third highest rate of fatal truck accidents.

Types of Collisions

 Some common types of truck collisions include:

  • Rear-end collisions: These accidents occur when a truck crashes into the back of another vehicle, as a result of tailgating, distracted driving, or sudden stops. The weight and size of trucks can result in severe impacts and injuries to the occupants of the vehicle struck by the tractor-trailer.
  • Side-impact crashes: These trucking accidents, also known as T-bone collisions, happen when the side of a truck collides with another vehicle. Side-impact crashes are particularly dangerous because the sides of vehicles offer less protection than the front or rear. These accidents often occur at intersections or when a truck fails to yield the right-of-way.
  • Rollover accidents: Trucks, especially those with high centers of gravity like tanker trucks or semi-trucks, are susceptible to rollover accidents. Factors such as excessive speed, sharp turns, unbalanced loads, poor road conditions, or inexperienced drivers cause rollover accidents. Rollover accidents endanger the truck driver and pose risks to nearby vehicles and pedestrians.
  • Jackknife accidents: A jackknife crash occurs when a truck’s trailer swings out to the side, forming a 90-degree angle with the cab. This can happen when a truck driver brakes suddenly. Jackknife accidents often result in a truck wreck blocking multiple lanes of traffic, increasing the chances of multi-vehicle collisions.
  • Underride accidents: These accidents occur when a smaller vehicle becomes wedged underneath a truck or trailer. Underride accidents often lead to catastrophic injuries or fatalities. The top of the smaller vehicle can be crushed or sheared off as it slides under the truck trailer. Inadequate underride guards on trucks can contribute to underride accidents.
  • Tire blowouts: Truck tire blowouts are common contributing factors to large truck accidents. Improper tire maintenance, overloading, or defective tires can cause blowouts. When a tire blows out, the truck driver may lose control of the vehicle, potentially veering into other lanes or causing a rollover accident.
  • Wide-turn accidents: Trucks require a wider turning radius than smaller vehicles. If a truck driver fails to signal properly or misjudges the space needed for a turn, the tractor-trailer may collide with vehicles in adjacent lanes or even pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Spilled cargo accidents: Improperly secured cargo can fall from a truck, creating road hazards. Cargo spill accidents can cause direct collisions or lead to secondary accidents as other vehicles swerve to avoid the spilled cargo on the road.

The consequences of these truck accidents can be severe injuries, fatalities, and extensive property damage. Truck drivers, trucking companies, and other road users must take proper safety measures and adhere to regulations to minimize the risk of serious accidents on Mississippi’s roads.

Factors Contributing to Truck Accidents

Numerous factors contribute to large truck accidents on Mississippi roads. According to MDOT, some of the most common causes include:

  • Driver fatigue: Long hours on the road can lead to drowsiness and impaired judgment. Truck drivers who disregard hours-of-service limits on time spent driving may be liable for drowsy driving accidents.
  • Distracted driving: Distractions such as cell phone use or eating while driving can take a truck driver’s attention away from the road.
  • Speeding: Exceeding the posted speed limit or driving too fast for road or weather conditions increases the risk of trucking accidents.
  • Driving under the influence: Operating a truck while impaired by drugs or alcohol severely compromises safety.
  • Improper maintenance: Neglecting regular truck maintenance can lead to equipment failure and accidents.

Economic Impact of Truck Accidents

The costs associated with truck accidents extend beyond the immediate aftermath. Medical expenses for injured victims can quickly accumulate, placing a significant financial burden on individuals and families. In severe cases, ongoing medical treatment, rehabilitation, and care may be required, further compounding the costs. Truck accident victims should not be responsible for these costs if their injuries were caused by the negligence of others.

Truck accidents can also lead to lost productivity and income for those involved. People recovering from serious injuries may be unable to work for extended periods, leading to lost wages, reduced earning capacity, and financial strain on households. The ripple effects of these accidents can also impact businesses. Employees may require months off to recover or care for injured family members. The cumulative economic loss due to truck accidents in Mississippi can be significant.

Our Mississippi truck accident lawyers can identify those who are financially responsible and conduct a detailed investigation focused on proving liability. Our truck accident attorneys can pursue a personal injury case on your behalf and seek all of the compensation available for your truck accident injuries. Our goal is to help you rebuild your life. 

Safety Concerns

Mississippi communities face specific safety concerns related to truck accidents. The state’s network of highways and interstates, such as I-55, I-20, and I-10, serve as major transportation corridors for tractor-trailers and other commercial trucks. The high volume of truck traffic on these routes increases the risk of accidents, particularly in areas with heavy congestion or during peak travel times.

Mississippi’s roads in rural areas and two-lane highways often have narrow shoulders, limited visibility, and fewer safety features compared to larger highways. When large trucks navigate these rural routes, the risk of accidents increases, particularly when factors such as driver fatigue, distraction, or poor road conditions come into play.

Certain vulnerable populations in Mississippi are disproportionately affected by truck accidents. Pedestrians and cyclists, especially in urban areas or near truck routes, face heightened risks when sharing the road with large trucks. Children, elderly individuals, and people with disabilities may also be more susceptible to severe injuries in the event of a truck accident.

Another safety concern is the presence of logging trucks on rural roads in Mississippi. The state’s forestry industry relies heavily on these heavy trucks to transport timber. However, the weight and size of these vehicles can pose additional hazards, especially on narrow rural roads. Accidents involving logging trucks can be particularly devastating due to the nature of their cargo if it spills.

Get The Help You Need From Our Experienced Attorneys Near You

You don’t have to deal with the devastating aftermath of a truck accident alone. Let a Mississippi personal injury lawyer help you understand your legal rights. Haug, Farrar & Franco, PLLC, is your legal firm with vast experience and today you can schedule a free consultation about a truck accident case. Our experienced Mississippi truck accident attorneys will fight to seek the justice and compensation you deserve. Contact our trucking accident law firm at (228) 872-8752 or fill out our contact form.

  • Legally Reviewed By
    Todd M. Farrar
    Todd has experience representing clients in many areas of law, including hundreds of cases related to serious injuries from car & trucking accidents in Gulfport; criminal defense of DUIs, misdemeanors, and felonies; medical malpractice claims; and a wide range of other serious personal injury matters.

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