Commercial truck drivers are the reason the rest of us can enjoy many modern conveniences. Without the trucking professionals on the roadways, modern conveniences like readily available goods in stores and overnight shipping would simply not be feasible.
The massive vehicles these drivers operate also cause some of the most devastating accidents on the road. The pure inertia of a tractor trailer can tear through cars and anything else in the way when a driver loses control. These types of accidents are more common than most people like to consider.
The Big Four
The reality is that accidents with tractor trailers, box vans and other large vehicles happen regularly and the injuries they cause are often catastrophic. Four of the most common reasons these accidents occur include the following:
As with non-commercial drivers, reckless and careless driving is simply unsafe. This can include behaviors that distract drivers, like texting and driving, speaking on a cell phone or eating while driving. Perhaps more commonly the cause of accidents is driving too aggressively. Speeding is a real danger that cuts down on reaction time and makes accidents all the more devastating.
Bad hiring practices
The American trucking industry is suffering a major shortage of workers. The life of a commercial trucker is difficult, and few people want the responsibility, deadlines and other hardships that it entails. This has led some firms to being lax in their hiring practices. As a result, you may find yourself on the road with individuals that are not qualified to drive or have unsafe histories.
One of the hallmarks of a truck driver is working long hours to make sure their freight meets its destination on time. While there are laws in place to prevent drivers from pushing themselves too hard, it still occasionally happens. Drowsy driving can be equally as dangerous as drunk driving. Accident happen when drivers aren’t at their best.
Driving under the influence
The majority of commercial drivers are professionals who treat their jobs with the highest respect. They know that the truck driving industry is held to the highest scrutiny regarding the sobriety of its operators. Never the less, there are those that drive under the influence of drugs and alcohol. As with non-commercial drivers, mixing substances with driving is one of the surest ways to cause a collision.
The tireless efforts of the men and women who haul freight around this great country help keep our lives humming along. Accidents do happen, though. Be sure to give extra space to any vehicle that is driving erratically – you don’t know what the driver may do next.