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State legislature to consider reduced speed for big rigs

Louisiana residents in any type of standard passenger vehicle who find themselves on the road next to a semi truck or other large vehicle know how incredibly vulnerable one can feel when in such proximity to these big rigs. The sheer size and weight of tractor trailers and many other commercial vehicles can make the impact of an accident more severe than if it involved smaller vehicles.

Speed is another factor that can contribute to the outcome of a crash. For this reason, a lawmaker from Baton Rouge is pushing for the state legislature to consider a reduction in speed limits for large vehicles like semis and school buses on state interstates. Currently, speed limits run between 70 and 75 miles per hour for all vehicles on these roads. To date, six other states have initiated a tiered approach to speed limits on interstates with larger vehicles being restricted to speeds of sometimes 10 miles per hour less than smaller vehicles.

The goal of the effort would be to reduce accidents on Louisiana roads. In 2016, there were more than 7,400 motor vehicle accidents statewide involving large trucks or school buses. These accidents accounted for five percent of all fatalities in the state and another two percent of all vehicular injuries. Data is currently being compiled that would show the expected safety outcomes or improvements if the new law was passed.

Louisiana residents who are involved in accidents with large trucks or school buses might want talk with an attorney to learn how they could seek compensation in these situations.

Source: NOLA.com, "Should big trucks, buses drive slower on highways? Bill would lower speed limits," Beau Evans, April 11, 2017

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