Tragedy recently struck when a 32-year-old woman was instantly killed in a truck accident. According to a local news article covering the accident, the incident occurred when the victim, a 32-year-old woman, driving a Jeep failed to respond to oncoming traffic and ran directly into the rear of a semi-tractor trailer in front of her. She was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. While truck accidents occur all the time, this type of accident was a particular type called an “underride crash,” which can be especially fatal for Maryland residents.
An underride crash is a particular type of accident where a car slides underneath a large truck or semi-trailer. These crashes happen all across the country, including Maryland, and are often fatal, killing hundreds of people every year. While some large trucks have underride guards on them – large metal barriers at the back to stop vehicles from sliding under—research has found that these often fail to protect drivers. The guards tend to collapse and bend under when a car runs into them.
Congress has attempted to stop underride crashes. In March of 2019, the STOP Underrides Bill was introduced into Congress, which would allow engineers to put more effective protections on every truck, helping to end preventable tragedies. However, the bill has not been passed. In fact, according to a petition supporting the bill, it’s been 22 years since the last underride regulation was passed. In that time, more than 4,000 people have died in these tragic accidents.