Truck crashes are commonly referred to as “accidents,” but the truth is that many of these collisions are not accidents at all. The actions a truck driver takes behind the wheel can either help prevent a crash or lead to one—and in many cases, even a small amount of negligence can have disastrous consequences.
Reasons for a Truck Crash
One of the most well-known causes of truck accidents is trucker fatigue. Drivers often endure grueling schedules and go for several days without the benefit of a good night’s rest. Even though there are strict federal regulations limiting the amount of time a commercial trucker can spend driving per week, some ignore these rules or are encouraged to drive longer to increase company profits.
Here are some other common behaviors and reasons for a truck accident:
- Reckless driving. Truckers have a higher duty of care than the drivers of smaller vehicles, since trucks weigh much more and can do far more damage in a crash. Speeding, road rage, following another vehicle too closely, unsafe lane changes, and failing to signal a lane change can all be considered reckless driving.
- Texting or talking on phones. It is against federal law for truckers to text while driving, and drivers are forbidden from talking on phones without a hands-free device.
- Using drugs. Drivers may use stimulants or other dangerous drugs to stay awake on long shifts, to cope with chronic pain, or to deal with the boredom of long drives.
- Training gaps. Driving a car is far different from operating a commercial vehicle, and a truck driver who has not received the proper training may not handle his truck safely on the roads.
- Overloading. An overloaded vehicle will be harder to stop, have a higher impact, and is more likely to roll over in a crash. Although federal regulations determine how much cargo each commercial truck and trailer can legally carry, drivers may overload their trucks in order to make bigger deliveries more quickly.
If you’ve recently been involved in an accident, we can help you recover the costs of your medical bills, vehicle repair, lost wages, and other losses. At Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum, we will review your case details, help you understand your legal options, and build a case to maximize your recovery. Fill out the contact form on this page to speak with a member of our team today.