Did you know that almost 70 percent of all commercial freight in the United States is delivered by trucks? These include big rigs, delivery trucks, and semi trucks. Unfortunately, these trucks also pose a major threat to the safety of those on the road when not properly handled.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, someone is seriously injured or killed by a tractor-trailer every 16 minutes. That is an extremely shocking number and demands the attention and focus of trucking companies, truck drivers, and all other drivers on the road.
What Causes Semi Truck Accidents?
People frequently ask, “What causes so many semi truck accidents?” According to data, research, and injury reports, there are a few main causes and trends that seem to account for the majority of accidents and injuries.
Driver Fatigue. While driving may seem easy, it’s certainly not a simple job. It involves long hours of focus and attention. Because semi trucks hold large amounts of products and materials, it’s important to deliver them on time. When they come in late, drivers are often penalized or even fined for missing deadlines. As such, many drivers will give up sleep to make up for lost time. This leads to fatigue and ultimately a higher risk of causing an accident.
Blind Spots. Every driver understands the danger of blind spots. Even on a small car, a blind spot can easily hide other vehicles and lead to accidents. Imagine what the blind spot on a semi truck must be like. Truck drivers have three different blind spots – one in front of the truck, one behind the truck, and one on the passenger side door – and must constantly monitor these areas. Occasionally, a driver slips up and fails to monitor his blind spots.
Substance Use. According to recent studies, drug use is rampant in the truck driving profession. While not everyone chooses to participate, some choose to do so while driving. This greatly inhibits reaction times and leads to carelessness.
Unfamiliar Roads. Because semi truck drivers travel all over the country, they often find themselves on unfamiliar roads. This can lead to wrong turns, sudden lane changes, or taking curves too quickly. In these situations, blind spots become compromised, top-heavy loads shift, and drivers become distracted.
Distracted Driving. Much like it is for drivers of passenger vehicles, distracted driving is quite a problem for truck drivers. Distracted driving refers to texting, eating, drinking, making phone calls, talking, changing the radio station, or even using a navigation system while operating a vehicle. All of these things can detract from driver focus and cause accidents.
Road Rage. Road rage can get the best of everyone – even truck drivers who make a living driving professionally. When emotions get the best of a driver, it can lead to aggressive, irresponsible behavior that can cause accidents and injury.
Ohio Injury Law
Erney Law offer high quality legal representation for those injured in semi truck accidents. If you are looking for legal representation, don’t hesitate to contact us today for more information and a free initial consultation.