Truck drivers perform an essential service. However, when trucking companies do not follow appropriate procedures, trucks can be dangerous on the road.
When a truck accident occurs, the driver is not always the only person at fault. Transporting freight is a complex process, and errors or negligence at any point in the process can lead to a serious or even fatal crash.
1. Inadequate driver training
When trucking companies neglect their drivers’ training, the results can be deadly. According to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, a major factor in truck accidents is driver error, which may include speeding, following too closely or inattentive driving. Poor training and lack of oversight can contribute to risky driver behavior.
2. Unreasonable schedules
Truck drivers face considerable pressure to meet deadlines. The FMCSA has clear hours-of-service regulations for drivers, but drivers operating under tight schedules and strict deadlines often ignore these rules. This can lead to driver fatigue, which impairs decision-making and can lead to drivers falling asleep behind the wheel.
3. Unsafe vehicles
Trucking companies should inspect and maintain their vehicles regularly, but unfortunately, some do not. Neglecting routine maintenance and repairs results in unsafe vehicles on the road, endangering drivers and their fellow motorists.
4. Unsecured cargo
Securing cargo properly is essential to safety. Trucks haul heavy loads, and if freight shifts during travel, it can cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle. Unsecured loads may be the result of poor training, inattention or faulty equipment.
When an accident involves a commercial vehicle, determining who is at fault is not always straightforward. There are many different parties responsible for ensuring that truck drivers and their cargo arrive safely at their destinations.