A Texas attorney who specializes in trucking safety says he’s worried about the uptick in 18-wheeler accidents, claiming that the pandemic is only making matters worse.

Over the past year, the number of trucking accidents has been steadily increasing nationwide, resulting in hundreds of deaths and thousands of serious injuries.

Although winter weather conditions can be blamed for a portion of these incidents, some legal experts point the finger elsewhere.

Fort Worth attorney Seth D. McCloskey of the Law Offices of Steven Laird PC attributes the surge in commercial truck accidents across the country on supply chain pressures created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the way, he claims, that the major trucking companies have “mishandled the worker shortage.”

The number of fatalities from truck crashes increased by 10.5 percent in the first three months of 2021 alone, according to the Associated Press.

“We’ve seen an increased demand placed on commercial drivers as a whole,” McCloskey said. “Motor carriers and trucking companies are having a very difficult time keeping up with demand. The pandemic has really played a huge role in this labor shortage.”

Because of the sheer size of 18-wheelers, truck crashes often result in serious injuries and deaths. A recent fiery collision in North Texas involving a fuel tanker not only caused major delays but resulted in one death and others injured.

“The trucking industry is quite frankly allowing some of this to take place, putting profit over safety,” McCloskey said. “Safety is taking a backseat at this point in time. That’s the reason we are seeing more and more fatalities and serious injuries on roads in Texas and across the country.”

McCloskey warns the end might not be near.

“It’s probably going to get worse before it gets better. We are reading reports, we are seeing the studies. Everyone needs supplies,” he said. “The trucks are going to keep rolling, the danger is going to continue to be there as long as the pandemic is surging.”

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