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Unknown facts about underride crashes and prevention


In order to address the decades long issue of underride crashes between semi trucks and other motor vehicles, on 12-12-17 U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) & Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) introduced the Stop Underrides Act, S. 2219 legislation. Shortly after, U.S. Representatives Steve Cohen (D-TN) and Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA) introduced the companion bill in the House, H.R. 4622

With and without underride side guards

An ‘underride crash’ is when a car slides under the body of a large truck, such as a semi-trailer, during an accident, increasing the likelihood of death or serious injury to the passenger vehicle occupants.  When these accidents happen, a car’s safety features are not able to protect passengers because most of the car slides under the trailer, and the truck crashes straight through the windows and into the passengers.   This is referred to as passenger intrusion and most are fatal.

A total of 3,986 people died in large truck crashes in 2016. 17% of these deaths were truck occupants, 66 % were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles, and 16 % were pedestrians, bicyclists or motorcyclists.
97% of vehicle occupants killed in two-vehicle crashes involving a passenger vehicle and a large truck in 2016 were occupants of the passenger vehicles.

A 1997 Institute study of fatal crashes between large trucks and passenger vehicles estimated that underride occurred in half of these crashes.
Of the underride crashes, 57%  involved the front of the truck, 22% involved the rear and 20% the side.

The Stop Underrides Act bill was originally drafted by, Marianne Karth and Lois Durso. Both Marianne and Lois have lost children due to underride crashes. Marianne & husband Jerry lost their 2 daughters, AnnaLeah and Mary in 2013.  This is their video story.  Lois lost her daughter Roya in 2004. This is Roya’s story. This is her video story.
Neither of these tragic accidents was the fault of the 4-wheeler.

In Memory of Roya 2004 And AnnaLeah & Mary 2013

The bill was originally called the Roya, AnnaLeah and Mary Comprehensive Underride Protection Act of 2017 or the  RAMCUP Act of 2017—now known as STOP Underrides Act.

Few people realize that the 1969 Federal Register recorded that the Department of Transportation intended, after further study, to extend underride protection to the sides of large trucks.


Studies for both rear guards and side guards have been evaluated
The protective ability of these devices has already been proven—the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) began evaluating rear underride guards several years ago, and 2017 marked the first year for the independent, nonprofit organization to test side underride guards. Their research has helped to demonstrate how the use of strong underride guards (specifically the AngelWing from Airflow Deflector, Inc.) can prevent a car from going under a truck’s trailer during a side impact while triggering airbag and belt restraint devices to protect vehicle occupants.

IIHS tests show benefits of side underride guards for semitrailers

Truck underride guard evaluations

What kind of burden will underride guard legislation put on the trucking industry? 

On March 3rd at 6PM e.t. we will be having a discussion on AskTheTrucker ‘live” on Blog Talk Radio about underride accidents and how they can be prevented. We’ll also address deep concerns the trucking industry has with this new bill, including the burden and cost.
Underride Protection Act of 2017- Truck RearGuards & SideGuards
Call in number for the show is 347-826-9170

Our guest will be grieving parents turned safety advocates and activists Marianne & Jerry Karth and Lois Durso.

Lois Durso & Marianne Karth

Lois Durso & Marianne Karth

The discussion will include the Stop Underrides Act of 2017 S.2219  and H.R. 4622 and how side and rear underride guards can save hundreds of lives.  Topics will include the cost feasibility, added weight, loading docks, Axle/tandems, distracted drivers and other questions the industry and drivers have.


Jerry Karth and Marianne Karth

A main focus will be to discuss solutions which can prevent underride crashes accounting for at least 300+ deaths per year.





Underride Guards a compilation of helpful resources

Understanding Underride VII: Cost/Benefit Analysis

Video 1 Benefits of side underride guards for semitrailers

Video 2 Lawmaker first to publicly back truck underride bill written by grieving moms

Video 3 Side Underride Guards save lives-The installation

Video 4- Why don’t tractor trailers have side guards?

*** Understanding Truck Underride

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the STOP Underrides Bill

A grieving dad got the attention of the trucking industry & made a difference.

For more info
and AnnaLeah & Mary

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By: Allen Smith

Allen Smith is a 37 year veteran who started at an early age in a household goods family moving business. He began driving straight trucks in 1977 and moved to the big rigs in 1982. His experience within the industry includes; owner operator, company driver, operations manager, and owner of a long distance HHG moving business, taking many of the long haul moves himself when needed. Allen Smith, a truck driver advocate who is driven by the desire to help others succeed within an industry where injustice, unrewarded sacrifice, and lack of respect and recognition exists. Allen and his wife Donna are hosts of Truth About Trucking ”Live” on Blog Talk Radio. Other websites include AskTheTrucker, TruckingSocialMedia, NorthAmericanTruckingALerts, TruthAboutTrucking, and many Social Media websites. In 2011 Allen and Donna hosted the first Truck Driver Social Media Convention, designed to create unity and solutions for the trucking industry. This is now being extended through the North American Trucking Alerts network as those within the industry join forces for the betterment of the industry. Allen strongly supports other industry advocates who are also stepping up to the plate to help those who share honesty, guidance and direction. He believes that all those involved in trucking need to be accountable for their part within the industry, including drivers, carriers, brokers, shippers, receivers, etc… The list of supporters and likeminded people grow daily, networking together and sharing thoughts and ideas for the betterment of trucking. He has coined the popular phrase "Raising the standards of the trucking industry"

View all posts by Allen Smith →

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10 Responses to Unknown facts about underride crashes and prevention. - Post a Comment

  1. Jo Dunn

    No one should deny the pain from accidents with semis, that should be a given. But the auto makers have done very little to address this issue since Ralph Nader wrote “Unsafe at any speed”.
    Air bags are worthless and digital warnings are too. The auto makers should build a crush proof passenger compartment and put the engine in the back where it cannot attack the riders. The dune buggy afficiandos learned early on that roll cages save lives, but instead auto makers sell glitz, smaller, lower and faster autos. Caddies don’t have such a risk, nor do SUVs. Attacking semis seems to be the game of the week: elds, governors, underriders, inward cameras, higher taxes, no engines running in New England, more tolls. It’s time to put the onus on the car makers to make us safe. As for truckers: pay for all hours worked will work wonders in safer driving and thus safer roads for all.

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  4. Shirley

    It seems to me it is always going to be the truck driver’s fault no matter what is installed on their truck. As I see it the 4 wheel drivers are so very reckless on the road. Driving to fast, following to closely, texting or on their phone without a hands free device. Maybe all trucks should shut down for a week and let the stores run out and at the same time find out how many of these accidents continue to happen. Trucking companies and especially small trucking companies are already hit so hard with expenses it is hard to make a living. The public does not like the trucks or the drivers but they like what these drivers and their trucks bring to the stores for them.

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