New York City has decided to retrofit over 200 city-owned trucks with protective guards to reduce the number of pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities. The metal guards along the side of the vehicle are intended to prevent anyone from falling underneath the vehicle. According to published statistics, trucks account for 32% of cyclist fatalities and 12.3% of pedestrian fatalities in NYC.
Although these guards will do little to decrease the actual number of bicycle and pedestrian accidents, they may reduce the number of deaths. Truck accidents are most dangerous when someone falls beneath the vehicle.
Serious accidents involving garbage trucks or delivery trucks are common in California, especially in San Francisco or Los Angeles.
Truck drivers have very poor visibility. This is an issue in urban settings where trucks are maneuvering in small spaces.
Sadly pedestrians and cyclists are easily overlooked, or completely obscured by the driver’s large blindspots. This is why it’s common to see one garbage man outside of the vehicle helping the driver maneuver in tight places.
In December 2014, a female pedestrian was struck and killed by a reversing trash truck in West LA. San Francisco had several bicycle fatalities involving garbage trucks the previous year. Should these NYC new truck guards prove to be effective at reducing the city’s fatalities, hopefully other communities follow suit.
Truck accident personal injury claims can be complicated, especially when the vehicle is owned by the city or county. When a governmental entity is involved, your deadline to file a claim and pursue damages is greatly reduced. If you or a family member has been injured in an accident, call our attorneys for a free case review.