The presence of large trucks on the roads presents a higher level of risk for drivers. These big rigs are not only larger than other vehicles, but they also take longer to start and stop than smaller cars.
Many factors contribute to accidents involving trucks. Some of them are due to other vehicle operators, while some are due to the trucks or truck drivers themselves.
Vehicle driver causes
According to FindLaw, car drivers and other vehicle drivers are the cause of many truck accidents. This is typically because these drivers do not understand how trucks operate, and they drive unsafely around them.
One of the things drivers do not realize is that there are more and larger blind spots for trucks than for smaller vehicles. This means that drivers unknowingly drive in areas the truck drivers cannot see.
Trucks accelerate and decelerate differently than vehicle operators. This may result in a car pulling in front of a truck too close, and the truck does not have time to slow down enough, which causes the truck to swerve quickly. Other mistakes drivers make include passing unsafely, driving in between two large trucks and turning in front of a truck while misjudging the truck’s speed.
Truck driver causes
Some accidents are due to improper actions by truck drivers. Although truckers must carry a CDL license, some operators may not have the proper skills to drive large vehicles. Accidents are more common in inclement weather when truck drivers do not operate the rig appropriately for the weather.
Speed and driver fatigue are also common causes of crashes. To combat this, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration discusses regulations in place that promote driver safety. These include limiting the number of consecutive hours a driver operates the vehicle, requiring breaks, requiring a minimum number of consecutive off-duty hours and outlining requirements for time spent in the sleeper berth.