Rear safety bars on semi-trailers are supposed to save your life, but WBNS-10TV in Columbus has found they are often too weak, corroded or bent to work effectively on many trucks throughout Ohio.
The guards are designed to keep a car from sliding underneath trailers in the event of a rear end impact at speeds of up to 30-35 miles per hour. But when they fail, the consequences can be catastrophic.
One of the main reasons these damaged bars are still on the road is a lack of enforcement; drivers and the owners of the semi-trucks they drive do not pay fines as a direct result of damages bars.
If the Ohio State Highway Patrol spots and notes a violation, the information is forwarded to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO). Of 170 violations submitted to the PUCO in the past three years, none have directly resulted in a fine. PUCO only fines truck companies if their overall safety rating falls below a certain standard.
“It seems like they’re not taking care of that part of the truck,” said semi driver Lester Marriott. “And that’s important because in a collision, that keeps a car from going under.” Read the full details here:
10 Investigates: Drivers Don’t Face Fines For Damaged Under-Ride Bars
This article demonstrates that safety isn’t always a trucking company’s primary goal. Without a financial threat, it is unlikely any companies will take the time to inspect and fix these safety defects.
If you feel that unsafe driving factors exhibited by truck drivers led to a major accident which impacted your family’s life, please contact the experienced attorneys of Crandall & Pera Law.