Fewer accidents – but no reason for complacency

DEKRA Info July / August 2018

Goods traffic: Fewer accidents, but no reason for complacency

DEKRA Road Safety Report 2018 on goods transport:

Goods vehicles are far better than their reputation. In comparison to a car they are relatively seldom involved in accidents. However, the DEKRA Road Safety Report shows that there is no reason to be complacent. Especially accidents with heavy trucks (12 tons and over) are frequently severe in their consequences due to the high mass involved; firstly for the truck driver himself, but secondly and above all for the car driver and vulnerable road users such as pedestrians or cyclists. “The potential offered by active and passive safety of commercial vehicles needs to be exploited even more efficiently,” says Clemens Klinke, member of the DEKRA SE Management Board and responsible for the Automotive Business Unit.

“Juggernaut crash on the freeway”, “Truck piles into tail of traffic jam”, “Three killed by truck driver driving the wrong way” and many more similar headlines: The media regularly reports on accidents involving commercial vehicles. However, despite the tragic consequences for those affected, these instances should not distort the facts: Compared to the mileage covered, goods vehicles are significantly less likely to be involved in injury-related accidents than cars.

According to figures released by the Federal Statistics Office, the number of accidents resulting in injuries and involving goods vehicles fell between 2005 and 2016 from about 36,650 to 29,350 – that is a reduction of 20 percent. The number of fatalities in accidents with goods vehicles decreased during this period by 35 percent from almost 1,160 to 745 and this despite the great increase in goods vehicle traffic.

The experts expect further improvements primarily from the use of additional driver assistance systems in commercial vehicles such as, for example, the electronic turn-off assistant. Moreover, it is also important to make drivers sufficiently aware not only of the functions and potentials of these systems, but also of the risks they bring with them. What is more, the drivers need to be sensitized even more to the dangers of being distracted at the wheel and of insufficiently securing their cargo and, of course, to the fact that they always have to put on the lifesaver Number 1, the seat belt on each trip. (www.dekra-roadsafety.com or www.dekra.de/verkehrssicherheitsreport).


Tilman Vögele-Ebering

Press officer Industrial


Fax +49.711.7861-742122

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