Every day, massive 18-wheelers rumble through Elk Grove on some of California’s famed freeways. Due to lax safety regulations, hiring standards, and oversight, truck drivers are responsible for a large proportion of all vehicular accidents in Elk Grove. While federal regulators are hard at work on cracking down on a broken trucking industry, Congress, funded by wealthy trucking companies and lobbyists, resists revising laws to provide greater protection to car drivers, passengers, bikers, cyclists, and pedestrians.
Truck accident fatalities are on the rise nationwide. The number of deaths has risen exponentially in the past decade, thanks in large part to Congress’s refusal to honor recommendations to reform the trucking industry. Between 2009 and 2013, the number of truck accident deaths increased by 17%, hitting a high of 3,964 in 2013. Trucks account for less than 10% of vehicles on the road, yet they are involved in over 12% of all fatal crashes (and 25% of all fatal crashes in construction zones).