Trucks are probably the most complex land vehicle to drive. Truck drivers must have proper training and possess the specific license to operate such humongous cars on the road. Unfortunately, some reported accidents involve trucks caused by human error.
While factors such as road and weather conditions can affect the driving behavior of truck drivers, human error remains the leading cause of truck accidents. Such negligence has already been the top story of news organizations, claiming the lives of countless truck drivers, their victims, and millions-worth of property damage.
If ever this unfortunate event happens, here are the top truck driver errors that truck accident lawyers want you to know. It can fortify your case when claiming damages.
Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol
News agencies have reported that either drugs or alcohol influenced some truck drivers involved in road accidents. The most common reason drivers do such illegal acts is to keep them awake while driving for long hours or help them cope with the isolation of being away from their loved ones.
It is a must for all truck drivers to maintain strong motor coordination and reaction time to their surroundings to drive the vehicle safely. Trucks take up a lot of space on the road, making them difficult to maneuver and stop, which is why drivers should never get intoxicated with any substance while they are behind the steering wheel.
People who experience drowsiness will also experience delayed reaction times and poor decision-making, and truck drivers are no exemption to this. The worst thing can happen once they start falling asleep while driving.
To avoid more casualties, The United States Department of Transportation agency Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set the number of hours a truck driver can drive the vehicle to avoid overfatigue.
Truck drivers are only provided 11 hours of driving under their 14 hours shift. In most cases, some truckers and employers disregard this rule to earn more, which results in horrible accidents and the death of innocent people.
Ignoring Road Safety
The authorities install road signs and markings to keep people away from accidents, but some truckers ignore it all to earn more. Overspeeding, beating-the-red-light, counterflowing, disobeying road warning signs are the most common violations.
If not apprehended by law enforcers, they will continue to be reckless on the road and will cause harm to others. Some truckers point out that the tight deadlines are the usual causes of their disobedience to road safety, but they shouldn’t ignore such reasons since they are not the only ones using public roads.
It is probably the most common human error that puts people’s lives in great danger. Keep in mind that the brakes of any vehicle will not fail if they are well-maintained. Before leaving the area and starting the long drive, all truck drivers must check the braking power of their vehicle.
With all the apparent risks of driving a failing braking system, most truckers still do not want to bear responsibility for the vehicle’s maintenance because it is the company’s sole responsibility only. Some drivers do not report even minor issues to their employer to avoid halting their source of income.
That can be a fatal mistake because the victims can also hold the company responsible for injuries and casualties, and that’s something every company wants to avoid.
Most drivers do not do the loading and unloading of cargoes on the truck. Someone does it for them, such as the operators of cranes and excavators. Before they start traveling, they must ensure and carefully inspect that the cargoes are well-secured.
As the vehicle moves and changes direction, the loads shift their weight, making it a high risk for rollover accidents. The heavier the load, the more difficult it is for the trucker to maneuver the vehicle in sharp or tight corners.
If the loads or cargoes are not secured properly, they will fall out of the truck and cause severe damage to the coming vehicles. Aside from transporting our goods on time, truck drivers should also be role models for road safety and traffic obedience to stop contributing to truck fatalities.
You should all do your part in keeping the roads safe. It’s important to introduce road safety education to kids at an early age to teach them about the dangers of the road once a driver becomes reckless. Achieving a safer road starts with discipline and respect for other drivers and pedestrians.