Trucks Are Defective Without Side Underride Guards

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The City of Boston has just passed a first in the nation ordinance that vehicles over 10,000 pounds must be equipped with “side guards” to prevent pedestrians and cyclists from falling under the truck’s wheels in the event of a crash. Convex mirrors, cross-over mirrors, and blind-spot awareness decals are also included in the program’s measures in an effort to prevent crashes. The law applies only to city-contracted trucks.

The National Transportation Safety Board recommended that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration adopt the same protocol, but it has yet to do so. In Europe side guard protection on trucks has been mandatory for years (since 1994). The initiative, the NTSB noted, wouldn’t just protect bicyclists: people in cars would also reduce the risk of their vehicle sliding under tractor trailers, which can cause serious injury or death. The board reported in April that “large truck side impacts comprised 15 percent of fatal two-vehicle collisions between large trucks and passenger vehicles during 2011.”

Here’s a news report of a fatal crash in Pennsylvania on Nov. 1, 2014:

It’s time to adopt the NHTSB recommendation for side under ride protraction on all big trucks. If you need legal advice from a Tennessee product liability attorney or Nashville tractor trailer under ride attorney with the experience to handle trucking/tractor-trailer accident or death cases, click here to contact us for a confidential case review.