5 Common Truck Driver Errors That Lead to Accidents
No driver is perfect; everyone is capable of making small mistakes on the road. Some mistakes have little to no consequences, but even the smallest mistakes could lead to potentially devastating accidents. This is especially important to keep in mind for truck drivers, whose massive vehicles have the potential to cause significant damage. This guide is meant to illustrate some of the common mistakes from truck drivers that could potentially lead to accidents.
1. Driving while Fatigued
Truck drivers are limited on how long they are allowed to be on the road before taking a break. The regulations allow them a total of 11 hours of driving for a 14 hour period. With a constant pressure of reaching strict deadlines, however, it is not uncommon for drivers to surpass their permitted time allotted, which can cause drowsiness or zoning out, potentially leading to devastating accidents.
Another issue that could possibly be attributed to the strict deadlines truck drivers must meet is speeding. Speeding is one of the leading causes of automobile accidents in the U.S. The faster one drives, the more difficult it becomes to come to a safe stop and control the vehicle. This only becomes more difficult the larger and heavier the vehicle is. While speeding is dangerous in any vehicle, a trucks’ massive size means it takes far more time to reach a complete stop than with any other vehicle.
3. Disregard for Traffic Laws
Whether one is trying to “race the red light” or failing to come to a complete stop at the stop sign, these seemingly small errors can lead to major accidents. It is easy to become complacent when driving and start taking unnecessary risks just to get to your destination faster. It is important to keep in mind that these laws and regulations are in place for a reason, and when followed, significantly reduce the chances of truck accidents.
4. Reckless Driving
Reckless driving includes a variety of potentially dangerous actions taken by a driver with intent. These include taking needless, emotionally-charged risks (road rage), improper lane changes, tailgating, ignoring traffic laws and more. Large trucks were built to be handled with caution, so a truck driver ignoring this by driving recklessly leads to especially catastrophic accidents.
5. Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence is not only a crime, but it’s incredibly dangerous. This doesn’t only include drugs and alcohol – many people neglect the fact that a variety of different over-the-counter medications suggest not getting behind the wheel or operating heavy machinery after use. Some truck drivers may take certain pain or allergy medications without heeding the warnings and impair their ability to drive safely.
Driving requires constant vigilance and attention to detail. Being under the influence of anything can take a driver’s attention away from the road just long enough to cause an accident.
Truck drivers have a huge responsibility to uphold a standard of safety and excellence when on the road. The devastating effects from a truck crash can lead to pain and suffering that is only resolved by ongoing medical care and even rehabilitation, resulting in mounting medical bills.
Here at Rinehardt Injury Attorneys, our Ohio truck accident lawyers have years of experience representing drivers hurt in a truck accident. If you’ve been involved in a truck accident near the Mansfield or Columbus area, our exceptional team will work day and night to help you receive the compensation you deserve. Feel free to contact our personal injury attorneys today for a free consultation.