Compared to most passenger vehicles, semi trucks drive significantly more miles on the road each year. And, even though semi trucks aren’t involved in as many crashes, they’re involved in a great number of accidents that result in serious injuries and fatalities.
It’s usually the person riding the smaller vehicle (bicycle, motorcycle, car, etc.) who’s more likely to sustain injuries in case of a crash. That’s, of course, largely due to the truck’s large size. But, what are the common causes of a semi truck accident? They’re the following:
- Driver Fatigue
Each day, road accidents occur due to driver fatigue. As fatigued drivers hit the roads, their mental and physical bodies begin to slow down or fall into disarray. If you’re out on the road at all times, you should look out for fatigued drivers, especially semi truck drivers.
As you might know, drivers of trucks work very long hours. When they’re on their way home after a long day, they become prime candidates for driver fatigue-related crashes. They’ll be slower and less alert than someone who’s rested and is trying to catch up. Also, the driver’s age will play a role in the onset of fatigue. Older drivers will typically be less alert and more susceptible to fatigue than the younger ones.
The symptoms of driver’s fatigue include drowsiness, dizziness, numbness, headaches, and blurred vision. In many cases, drivers will have a difficult time seeing the road ahead of them. They’ll find it hard to make turns, read road signs, and navigate in and around traffic.
- Lack Of Driver Training
A semi truck is different from any other vehicle mainly because of its large size. Semi truck drivers need to have good maneuvering skills for them to navigate their vehicles on roads and highways. Lack of proper training can sometimes be due to a shortage of resources or time. The problem is that it may lead to accidents, endangering people’s lives. If you’ve been injured because of a semi truck accident as a result of lack of driver training, an accident lawyer can help you file a claim against the driver or the trucking company at fault.
Driver errors have become a common reason why semi trucks are involved in accidents. One common driving error is speeding.
Speeding can refer to traveling too fast in general. For example, on some roads, a 65 mile per hour speed limit is perfectly acceptable; however, during periods of heavy traffic, it might only be safe to travel at 45 or lower. Often, a semi truck driver may fail to see or check blind spots before they switch lanes due to speeding. Some also change lanes too suddenly, which can result in the trucks colliding with other vehicles.
Speeding can also occur during rush hour traffic.
- Driving Under The Influence (DUI)
Accidents can happen for a number of reasons, but one of the most common is driving under the influence.
Most people don’t understand why they can get into accidents because of drunk driving. Substance abuse, like drinking too much alcohol, can affect the brain to a large degree, and that’s the reason why you may end up losing control of the wheels and injure others. The problem is that semi truck drivers who are driving under the influence pose a higher threat to others on the road because of the size of their vehicles.
- Cargo Inadequately Secured
Some companies make use of semi trucks with the latest equipment and cargo handling systems, but many are unaware of the possibility of having their cargo transported improperly. Most cargo handling accidents happen due to failure to secure cargo properly, but some accidents are caused by accidents that occur during the loading process. It’s important that any company that transports cargo, be it for personal or business use, learn about the potential dangers of improper cargo handling practices so that they can avoid accidents or causing injuries.
- Lack Of Maintenance
Ensuring that the vehicles are properly maintained is the trucking company’s responsibility. However, because of being time- and resource-intensive, many companies or the semi truck drivers themselves fail to provide adequate care to their vehicles. The problem is that lack of maintenance can end up causing accidents on the road when the semi truck malfunctions and the driver loses control of the vehicle.
Any of the things discussed above can lead to road accidents. After the crash, the experience can be confusing for everyone involved, making it hard to know what exactly has to be done. A semi truck accident can affect not only your physical abilities and finances, but also your emotional state. Safeguards or legal protection are most of the time in place for trucking companies, and that will make everything worse. What you can do to fight for your rights is to speak with a trucking accident attorney.