Interstate 95 (I-95) runs the entire length of South Carolina from north to south. As one of 11 interstate highways in South Carolina, it is a key piece of the state’s transportation network.
It is also dangerous. Thousands of trucks travel on Interstate 95 each day. These large and heavy vehicles create a hazard for people traveling in passenger vehicles.
Bringardner Injury Law Firm in Charleston represents people involved in interstate truck accidents across the entire state of South Carolina. Our Charleston truck accident lawyers can evaluate whether you have a case, and if so, pursue your case from start to finish.
Interstate 95 Statistics and Information
Interstate 95 is the north-south interstate on the Atlantic coast of the eastern United States. In Maine, it terminates at the Canadian border at the Houlton-Woodstock Border Crossing. The interstate travels south, primarily parallel to the coast, but significantly inland at points. I-95 terminates at US 1 south of downtown Miami.
In South Carolina, I-95 begins at Dillon in the north and runs south to Hardeeville. Dillon is approximately 65 miles northwest of the South Carolina coast by car. Florence and Walterboro are cities along the route. The route does not pass through South Carolina’s largest cities – Charleston, Columbia, North Charleston or Mount Pleasant.
- I-95 runs through 16 states.
- The entire length of I-95, from Maine to Florida, is 1,917 miles long.
- In South Carolina, the interstate is 199 miles long.
- Three welcome centers and five rest areas welcome travelers on I-95 in South Carolina. These places to stop are operated by the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT).
- Construction of I-95 began in 1956. The first section in South Carolina officially opened in 1968. It was completed in 1978. Portions have been moved and exits have been added since.
Source: National Highway System, FHWH Route Log and Finder List, The Weather Channel, 10 Longest Interstate Highways
Traffic, Truck Statistics and Vehicle Crashes on I-95
- According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 60% of I-95 is heavily clogged with traffic.
- Daily truck traffic to the I-95 corridor between Virginia and Florida averages 10,000 trucks each day. In peak periods, it may reach as high as 31,000 trucks in a single day.
- Trucks on the I-95 corridor share the roads with an average of 72,000 motor vehicles each day. During peak travel, there may be as many as 300,000 motor vehicles on the five state southern I-95 corridor daily.
- Freight Waves reports that I-95 ranks second for the most dangerous interstates in the United States. The determination is based on fatal accident rates in adverse weather conditions.
- In a five-year period, there were 109 deaths on I-95 in inclement weather periods of rain or snow.
- 19 traffic crash fatalities occurred on I-95 in South Carolina in 2020.
- 227 injury collisions occurred on I-95 in South Carolina in 2020.
Source: U.S. Department of Transportation, Corridor: Interstate 95 (I-95), FreightWaves, The Most Dangerous Interstates for Truckers, SCDPS, South Carolina Traffic Collision Fact Book, 2020.
Causes of Interstate Accidents Involving Trucks
Trucks are heavy vehicles. They maneuver differently than passenger vehicles. Speeding can make a truck driver unable to control his vehicle. In addition, speeding reduces reaction time. A truck driver may not be able to stop for the vehicle in front of them or respond appropriately to an unusual event on the road.
Distracted driving can take many forms. It may mean texting or talking on a cell phone, adjusting the radio, or simply letting your mind wander. When a person is distracted, they may fail to react appropriately to conditions around them. Studies show that distracted driving can be more dangerous than drunk driving.
Poorly secured loads
Trucks often transport loads of goods. If the load being transported is poorly secured, the result may be an accident. The load may fall from the truck, striking another vehicle. The load may cause the trailer to sway, becoming uncontrollable.
Fatigue, driving for too many hours
Truck drivers are often under pressure to work for long periods of time. They may become fatigued. It can be easy to ignore signs that it’s time to take a break.
A wrong-way driver is an extreme danger on the interstate. Wrong-way drivers may result from inattention, a medical episode or substance abuse. A wrong-way driver may cause a head-on collision that results in serious harm.
Lack of driving ability and training
A truck driver needs to be trained to be able to react to road conditions. They are professional drivers that need to know how to handle an obstruction, how to recover from a loss of control and how to drive in inclement weather. Lacking the necessary driving training and skills can be the underlying cause of an interstate truck accident.
Driving at night
It can be harder to see hazards when driving at night. Drivers should adjust their speed and following distance accordingly.
Drunk driving includes operating over the legal limit or under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance. Drunk driving inhibits the driver’s ability to interpret vital information while driving.
Potentially Liable Parties for Interstate Truck Accidents
In an interstate truck accident, there are multiple parties who may have legal liability, including:
- Trucking company: The trucking company is responsible for their truck drivers. They may be liable for hiring a bad truck driver, failing to train them properly, or not supervising a driver that exhibits poor behavior.
- Cargo or freight company: Typically, there is a cargo or freight company responsible for the goods on the truck. Poorly securing the load or failing to take other appropriate safety measures can create a hazard, and ultimately, legal liability.
- Truck driver: Drivers must be careful and cautious. They must be mindful that they are driving a heavy vehicle that poses a risk to others. They should be well-rested, unintoxicated, and aware of the condition of their truck and the road ahead of them.
- Other motor vehicle drivers: All drivers have a duty of care to others. If there is another driver that is responsible for negligence, they may be liable for a truck accident on the interstate.
- Vehicle manufacturer: Sometimes, a dangerous vehicle design can contribute to a crash or increase the severity of a crash. Vital safety components may fail because of their design. In addition, a poor structure can make a vehicle more likely to catch on fire or cause other damage to another vehicle.
South Carolina Lawyers for Truck Accidents on I-95
Bringardner Injury Law Firm is available 24/7. We represent people injured and killed in truck accidents, including those that occur on our interstates. If you have been hurt by a truck on I-95, we invite you to contact us to talk to our experienced truck accident lawyers.