Accidents happen every day, but even a minor collision with a semi-truck can have devastating results. Large trucks only make up about 4% of vehicles on the roadways, but they’re involved in roughly one out of every ten highway fatalities. With long distances to drive, grueling hours, and loneliness to combat, truckers face many unique obstacles on the road. Here are three of the more common mistakes truckers make that can have deadly consequences:
1. Truck driver fatigue
Driving while drowsy can impair drivers’ response time to road hazards and increase their likelihood of getting in an accident. Truckers often have a strict delivery schedule that requires them to drive a significant distance with little breaks or opportunities for rest. According to one study, 13% of commercial truck drivers were fatigued at the time of their collision.
While federal laws and regulations limit the number of hours spent on the road, many trucking companies still don’t abide by these laws. As a result, fatigued truckers are a significant risk to passenger vehicles on the road.
2. Distracted driving
All drivers are prone to get distracted on the road. But with the long hours alone in the cab of a truck, it’s especially easy for a trucker to become distracted in traffic. Whether it’s texting, eating while driving or fiddling with the radio and GPS, all of these activities take the truck driver’s focus away from driving.
A 2009 study found that a whopping 71% of large truck crashes occurred when a trucker was doing something other than driving. If a trucker isn’t paying attention, it puts everyone on the road at risk.
3. Driving under the influence
Driving under the influence is a prevalent issue among truck drivers, often stemming from the isolating nature of their work and long hours. According to a study on substance abuse in truckers worldwide, truckers in the U.S. have the highest frequency of positive tests for alcohol, with a concerning 12.5% of truck drivers affected. This alarming statistic highlights the need for increased awareness and preventive measures.
Operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol significantly compromises driving abilities, leading to risky behaviors, slower reaction times, and impaired judgment. Additionally, the use of stimulants like amphetamines, commonly used by truck drivers to combat fatigue, can result in drowsiness once their effects wear off, posing a significant threat on the road.
To ensure road safety and prevent potential accidents, it is crucial for all road users to be aware of the challenges faced by truck drivers. By understanding their unique circumstances, we can take proactive steps to avoid dangerous situations. If you are interested in learning more about age limits appropriate for Commercial Truck Drivers. This resource will provide you with valuable information to promote safer driving practices and contribute to a more secure road environment.
In case you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident, it is essential to understand your rights and seek proper legal representation. Our truck accident lawyers offer detailed information on the legal aspects and steps to take after a truck accident. By accessing this page, you can gain valuable insights into handling the aftermath of such incidents and ensure that your rights are protected.