Following a collision with a large commercial truck, you know you weren’t at fault, but you aren’t sure what caused the truck to crash into you. Did he violate the rules of the road, hours-of-service rules, or was there a problem with the truck?
Here are ten most common causes of truck accidents:
- Violating other traffic rules, such as running a red light or stop sign
- Driving drowsy and violating the hours-of-service rules
- Texting and driving
- Participating in other forms of distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol
- Driving under the influence of drugs, even prescription medications
- Exceeding load weight limits
- Driving with unbalanced cargo
- Mechanical or vehicle failure
Although many crashes occur because a truck driver was speeding, sometimes trucking companies are to blame for putting inexperienced truckers or truck drivers with numerous speeding and other traffic violations out on the road. Additionally, many trucking companies fail to screen their truck drivers for drugs and alcohol, resulting in unsafe drivers on the road.
While trucking companies and their lawyers like to try and push the blame for truck crashes on other drivers, information from the Department of Transportation (DOT) reveals the following breakdown of trucking accident causes:
- 87%: Driver failure
- 10%: Vehicle failure
- 3%: Environmental conditions
The DOT also found truck drivers were not driving the appropriate speeds in the majority of truck rollovers. What this information reveals is that most truck accidents are, in fact, caused by truck driver error and vehicle or mechanical failure. When truck drivers make poor decisions behind the wheel or trucking companies fail to perform regular maintenance on their vehicles, others suffer the consequences. Because this isn’t fair to victims of truck collisions, truck drivers and their trucking companies need to be held accountable.
While there are many factors that contribute to truck wrecks, the fact remains that truckers need to make better decisions at the wheel in order to reduce the amount of maneuver errors that causes innocent people to suffer injuries.