Out of all the 1.2 billion vehicles on the planet, about 45 million are classified as commercial vehicles, and 15.5 million of those are trucks in America. 2 million of these are tractor-trailers or semis. Data shown by Driving Tests and Trucking Info indicates that despite the fact that there have been numerous measures made on how to prevent vehicular accidents from the private and public sectors, 11% of all vehicle crash-related deaths are caused by large trucks; however, it only constitutes 2.4% of all vehicular accidents in the country. This means those truck accidents are 3 times less likely to happen, but when they do happen, the results could be fatal. Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes of these accidents.
An average truck driver may have to work 11 hours per day and can stretch to driving daily for 8 days straight before having a day off. They usually drive 500 miles a day and can start as early as the sun rises and stop way after the sun has set. On top of that, most of them have delivery deadlines where they’re more likely to push themselves to meet them. Any person at any given time having to go through these conditions on a consistent basis is bound to get tired sooner or later, so if and when it happens, an accident can occur. It would then mean that the parties involved will need to take on legal representation, look at a truck accident settlement calculator, strategize, and evaluate a financial settlement for damages.
A report from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) revealed that 61% of truck accidents happen in rural areas and 27% happen on interstate highways. It’s a real challenge to keep focus and concentration at all times staring into the endless pavement as truck drivers haul cargo from anywhere and everywhere traversing through all sorts of different places. There will be certain situations where the mind will wander and the body goes into auto-pilot, and there might be instances where boredom sets in and the driver may try to do something else to get entertained while going 60 miles per hour. A literal blink of an eye in this case could spell disaster.
Poor Vehicle Maintenance
Not having the truck properly maintained is a bad idea considering the wear and tear a truck goes through every year, moving thousands of miles on different terrains with heavy loads at such a demanding pace. Poor maintenance could cause any sort of defect and failure in any or multiple parts of the truck and may lead to accidents. Making sure that a proper and thorough PMS is done to the truck only costs an average of $15,000 annually. It’s such a small amount compared to the average cost of a truck accident with a single injured person of $148,000. It can go as high as $7 million if there’s a fatality and multiplies further depending on the number of injured parties and fatalities.
Other common causes include drug and alcohol use, reckless driver, and improper handling of the load. Accidents are always unwanted and there are steps that can be taken to avoid and minimize them. If it ever happens, the first and main thing to remember is to salvage lives and seek medical attention.