What are the common truck accidents and why do they occur?
Truck accidents can bring about fatal consequences. This is why commercial drivers should avoid them by all means. Truck accidents can cause devastating consequences that can cause physical, financial and emotional stress. Thus it is a must that we should have knowledge about the most common truck accidents and their reasons so that we can prepare well for them.
Truck accidents and other commercial vehicle accidents are different from a passenger vehicle accident. This is because a truck accident usually creates more damage, as a truck is bigger than a passenger vehicle. The massive weight of the truck along with its cargo type and volume determines the extent of the damage. Statistics show that fatigue of the driver, impairment in driving and improper training of drivers are the common reasons why truck accidents occur.
Truck accidents are usually divided into two: those that are caused by passenger vehicle drivers and those caused commercial drivers.
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Passenger Vehicle Drivers
Sometimes, the reasons why truck drivers meet accidents are not because of themselves but due to other drivers on the road. Some of these reasons are as follows:
Changing lanes abruptly is not good; neither is improperly merging in front of a truck. Passenger drivers need to consider that larger trucks need more distance and time for them to decrease speed. Passenger drivers should never swerve in front of a truck because it may lead to accidents because the truck driver was not given enough time to respond.
Passenger vehicles should be careful when trying to pass a truck because they may not know how much space is there. Avoid passing on steep roads, hills or curves and give enough room for a truck to pass safely and enough time for the driver to brake.
Blind Spot Driving
When driving behind a truck, always remember that the driver may not see you well. Truck drivers always have a blind spot where they have limited to zero visibility. Don't follow a truck too closely and give them enough room to maneuver.
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Allow Wide Turns
It may be hard for trucks to make wide turns so never race a truck towards a place where it may want to turn.
Commercial Truck Drivers
Truck Driver Fatigue
Driver fatigue is one of the reasons for truck accidents. Drivers should be given enough time for rest and sleep. Routes should be scheduled and drivers should avoid driving for more than 11 hours.
Poor Truck Maintenance
These are actually the fault of truck companies who do improper or poor maintenance. Routine checks should be done on trucks and other commercial vehicles and these checks should be properly documented. A truck company may be held liable for an accident when there is faulty equipment or equipment malfunction.
Location and Weather
Poorly created roads and extreme weather conditions such as storms, ice or snow can cause truck accidents to happen. Make sure that the truck has a maintenance check before proceeding in these conditions.
Truck drivers need to focus their attention on the road. One of the common reasons for truck accidents is calling or texting on mobile phones while driving. Truck drivers should let go of their gadgets while driving.
This is a common issue among truck drivers who drive and exceed the speed limit. Truck drivers should follow the traffic flow and not rush. Studies show that truck drivers are more likely to encounter accidents when they increase speed of a vehicle which weighs 20 times more than a typical passenger car.
Bad Driving Practices
Due to fatigue or being bored, truck drivers may often resort to unsafe driving practices such as following another vehicle too closely, failure to check for the blind spots, road rages, changing lanes and not using signals.
Other Common Causes of Truck Accidents
The other causes of truck accidents include improper training on the part of a truck driver, inexperienced driving, and overloading. Recently, countries ad states have already determined weight limits of commercial trucks to avoid accidents.
If you are truck driver, you should keep in mind all these causes so that you can avoid them. Accidents happen, but you have the power to prevent them from happening.