Slowing Down US 460 in Petersburg, Virginia

Despite increased efforts to improve interstate safety, trucking related deaths and accidents continue to be a common occurrence in Petersburg and the surrounding communities.  Data released by the U.S. Department of Transportation suggests that truck deaths in large-truck crashes is on the rise:

People Killed in Large-Truck Crashes

Type

2009

2010

Change

% Change

Truck Occupants

499

529

+30

+6.0%

Single-Vehicle

333

337

+4

+1.2%

Multi-Vehicle

166

192

+26

+16%

Other Vehicle

2,558

2,790

+232

+9.1%

Occupants

Non-Occupants

323

356

+33

+10%

Total

3,380

3,675

+295

+8.7%


This deadly trend hits close to home.  With US Route 460, Interstate I-95, and Interstate I-85 all converging in Petersburg, an increase in truck accident injuries and deaths negatively impacts all residents of Petersburg, Chesterfield, Prince George, Hopewell, and Dinwiddie.  

So what is causing the number of truck related deaths and accidents to rise?  There are a number of reasons for this unexpected increase in truck accidents:

  • More Big Trucks on the Road
  • Truck Driver Fatigue (More Hours on the Road)
  • A Shortage of Qualified Commercial Drivers
  • Increased Traffic and Congestion
  • Road Disrepair


Those familiar with US Route 460 know that it is notorious for car and truck related accidents.  A few high profile tractor-trailer accidents earlier this year again put this dangerous stretch of road in the public eye.   It comes as no surprise that those looking to find answers have found one of sorts . . . speed.  “Our goal is to continue to improve the safety and operational aspects of the corridor; a reduction of the posted speed limit in conjunction with continued enforcement in my opinion, will assist in the pursuit of those goals in this location.” (Dale Totten, a regional traffic engineer for VDOT).  Portions of US 460 will be reducing the posted speed limit from 55mph to 50mph in response to VDOT’s proposal.

How do we protect ourselves from dangerous tractor-trailers on the road?  

  • Never Give a Truck Driver the Benefit of the Doubt
  • Do Not Assume That a Driver Can See You
  • Do Not Assume That a Driver is Completely Awake
  • Do Not Drive in the Truck’s Blind Spot
  • Remember That Large Trucks Take Longer to Stop, So Keep a Safe Distance
  • Avoid Driving Next to a Tractor-Trailer or Truck


The bottom line is to understand that we live on one of the busiest trucking routes in the state.  Be aware that many truckers are being pushed too hard and may be drowsy or distracted.   If you or someone you know has been seriously injured due to the fault of another driver, call Cuthbert Law Offices.  We are attorneys specializing in Petersburg Truck Accidents and Injuries and Social Security Disability.