The U.S. Department of Transportation reports that around 500,000 trucking accidents occur each year and that about 5,000 of these trucking accidents result in fatalities. On average, one out of every eight traffic crash fatalities involves a trucking collision. So what are some of the common causes of these trucking accidents?
One major cause of trucking accidents is truck driver error. Driver error includes things such as driving under the influence, insufficient training, speeding to meet deadlines, trailering unsecured heavy loads, driving a truck in need of repairs, aggressive driving, and driver fatigue. Truck drivers usually work long hours and are under significant time and schedule demands which can create a dangerous situation on the public highways. As big truck rigs require a lot of maintenance to ensure safety, there are Federal laws regarding proper upkeep and logging of truck maintenance which the truck driver and his company are responsible for complying with. Also, under Federal law, the number of hours a truck driver can drive is a maximum of 11 continuous hours in a 14 hour work day, with a mandatory 10 hour rest period. In any 8 day period, a truck driver is only supposed to driver between 70-88 hours. Unfortunately, these rules are not always followed and accidents still occur due to driver fatigue and failure to maintain the truck in proper condition. Truck accidents can also be caused by dangerous actions of the drivers of smaller vehicles who don’t accelerate fast enough when passing a truck or fail to keep a safe distance from a truck. Poor weather and road conditions can also contribute to a trucking accident. If you’ve been injured in a trucking accident, call Robert Sparks Attorneys for a free telephone consultation regarding your rights against the truck driver and the company that owns the truck.