Arkansas Leads Nation in Truck Crash Fatalities

MARCH 12, 2007 - Posted at 3:14 p.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - A safety group says Arkansas and Wyoming are the deadliest states for big truck crashes.  The group Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways today called for tougher federal regulation to reduce fatalities.  About 100 people a week are killed in crashes with freight haulers on the highway nationwide.

The safest states for truck crashes were Rhode Island and Massachusetts, based on the number of fatalities per 100,000 residents during 2005, the most recent year with complete figures.

The group says Wyoming is the most dangerous, with 6.09 truck deaths per 100,000 of population.  Next is Arkansas at 4.17 deaths.  Oklahoma, New Mexico and Mississippi round out the bottom five.

The group is calling on the government to reduce the hours that truckers are allowed to drive without rest, increase safety inspections of big trucks, require on-board electronic monitors to ensure compliance with hours-of-service rules, and train drivers better.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)