Pickup trucks have always been popular with drivers who wanted to make use of their ability to carry cargo. For the first time ever, pickup trucks have outsold sedans in the U.S. market. With their increased popularity, there are more big pickup trucks than ever on the road today. However, these vehicles pose many hidden dangers.
Schmidt Kramer discusses some of the hidden dangers of pickup trucks. Most importantly, find out how you can avoid being injured or causing harm to others if you drive one.
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Why Are Big Pickup Trucks So Popular?
There are a lot of reasons why oversized pickup trucks have become so popular, including:
- Drivers say their visibility is better due to being higher up and having more/bigger windows
- Families can now use these vehicles due to the bigger cabin size
- Owners believe these vehicles are sturdier and better protect them if a crash occurs
- Drivers say they can see better in front of them and also vehicles in the lanes next to them
- They can be used for carrying furniture, equipment and other cargo
- It is easier for other cars and big semi-trucks to spot them because of their height
- They are fun to take on rugged roads or to go off-roading or camping
- Many drivers just like the way they look when compared to a sedan or even an SUV
As you can see, a lot of drivers feel there are many advantages and safety in owning and driving a larger pickup truck. However, there are hidden dangers that many pickup truck owners may not be aware of.
How Large Are The Newer, Bigger Pickup Trucks?
Bigger, oversized pickup trucks can weigh 5,000 pounds or more. They are also longer and taller. In fact, these vehicles are 11 percent larger than they were back in 2000, and they weigh more too – up to 24 percent heavier.
This gives these supersized trucks the advantage if they are involved in a collision. However, for those riding in a smaller car, getting hit by one of these bigger pickup trucks can cause catastrophic or fatal injuries.
What Hidden Dangers Do Big Pickup Trucks Pose?
While there are many advantages to oversized pickup trucks, drivers should also be aware of the hidden dangers they pose.
Bigger Blind Spot Zones
Every vehicle has blind spots. However, with the larger pickup trucks, these areas are more extensive. In fact, Consumer Reports measured front visibility for many vehicles, including larger pickup trucks. What they found was that the larger pickup trucks have front blind spots that are between 7 feet to 11 feet longer than sedans and SUVs.
Higher Bumpers Increase the Risk of Fatal Frontover Collisions
Regardless of whether you are driving a sedan, minivan, SUV or a pickup truck, it is impossible to see someone who is small or crouched down immediately in front of a vehicle. However one news station did a test showing how a driver could not see any children lined up in front of a large pickup truck. There were 9 children lined up before the driver could see anyone was there.
The hood of one of these vehicles is extremely high (on average, 55 inches), so it is taller than most small children. It is worth mentioning to drivers of these vehicles, because it greatly increases the risk of a frontover collision.
Statistically, over 80 percent of fatalities from frontover collisions involving a truck, van or SUV are victims between the ages of 12 months and 23 months.
Greater Risk of a Rollover Crash
Big pickup trucks have a higher center of gravity. This makes these vehicles much more vulnerable to rollover crashes. For instance, when going around tight corners. Other smaller vehicles, motorcyclists, cyclists and pedestrians are at risk for a dangerous collision if traveling near one of these vehicles during a turn.
More Likely to Cause Death in a Crash
When one of these pickup trucks crashes into a smaller vehicle, the driver of that smaller car is less likely to survive the crash. In fact, studies show that a victim is 1.59 times more likely to die than in a crash that does not involve a pickup truck.
Additionally, when facing unexpected road hazards, larger pickup trucks do not handle as well or stop as quickly as smaller cars do.
Need Help With a Pickup Truck Accident Claim? Call Our Firm Today
If you need legal help after being injured in a crash with a large pickup truck or another vehicle, our law firm is ready to help.
At Schmidt Kramer, we have been representing injury victims throughout Pennsylvania for decades. We have the resources and staff to fully investigate your claim and recover full and fair compensation for your losses.
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