The Five Most Common Causes of Trucking Accidents
Some of the most serious accidents that occur on the roads today involve large tractor-trailers. According to nationwide statistics, 500,000 accidents in the United States are caused directly or indirectly by tractor-trailers. Out of these staggering numbers of accidents, approximately 5,000 result in fatalities. While most truckers are responsible and well-trained drivers, some make mistakes just as do drivers of passenger vehicles. In this view, the causes of many trucking accidents include the following:*
Driver fatigue is a common cause of trucking accidents given the fact that trucking companies often push truckers to drive longer and faster to reach goods to their final destination. The accumulated fatigue causes them to have impaired judgment, concentration and reaction time. When this occurs, serious and often fatal accidents occur.
Driver impairment is another common cause of trucking accidents. Thousands of truckers each year are found guilty of using drugs and alcohol while on the job. Some drivers consume these substances when at truck stops while others actually carry these substances with them when driving.
Another cause of trucking accidents is poor driver training and maintenance. Before a trucker is allowed to drive a commercial truck, he or she must meet certain requirements including a threshold of training hours. However, not all truck drivers adhere to these guidelines. This results in a poorly trained trucker who puts their life and the lives of others at risk.
Likewise, the owners of trucks are required by law to keep their trucks in top shape before hitting the road. However, some do not follow this requirement due to the time and costs involved in the process – time that they could use to make deliveries. Poorly maintained tractor-trailers often include faulty brakes and overly warn tires, two conditions of which can lead to serious and often fatal trucking accidents.
The last most common cause of trucking accidents in driving while distracted. In the course of driving for several hours if not days over long distances, drivers commonly become bored and look for ways to occupy their time. This urge sometimes leads them to engage in driver distractions such as texting, talking on a cellphone, eating, drinking, fiddling with a radio or GPS device, grooming or visiting their favorite social media sites. When a driver takes his eyes off the road could be the difference between safety and causing an accident.
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