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The most common causes of truck accidents

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A truck accident may happen because of several causes. However, there are a few common reasons why a truck accident happens. Let's find out the most common causes of such accidents.

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Hours of service

About 65% of fatal crashes happen on long haul trips and that happens because drivers fall asleep while driving. This can be a big problem. Because the hours of service of the drivers is stretched, he doesn't have time to get enough sleep. It is possible to drive maximum 11 hours in a day. It is possible to do 60 hours in seven days and 70 hours in eight consecutive days. But after that, you need some break. If you're not taking the necessary breaks, it will result in less sleep and rest. And that can be a really big problem.

Fatigue

Another common causes fatigue of the truck driver. Driving the truck is a tough job and the lifestyle is different from other people having other jobs. The driver lives in the truck cabin and he works from there. It doesn't get enough time to mix with other people and so he doesn't have a very interesting and happening social life. Such things affect him mentally. And it's a tedious job. So, often truck drivers become victims of fatigue. The results of the fatigue are both mental and physical. It will hamper his ability to sleep. After some time, these factors may pin him down and he may not be able to concentrate even when he is driving. In such cases, the possibility of truck accidents increases.

Drug use

Using prescribed medications is what should happen, but because it is costly or probably due to time factor, many truck drivers are not using prescribed medicines. They either self treat or take over-the-counter medicines which may have side effects, which are very dangerous for a driver. Side-effects like drowsiness, nausea and other such related effects may result in unsafe driving. You should take only prescription medicines prescribed by a medical professional. While seeing your doctor, you need to tell him about your job so that the medical professional can decide the best prescription medicine for you and may make some changes, if necessary, according to your profession. If you are using uncontrolled substances or if you are using drugs and alcohol, the possibility of truck accidents will surely increase.

It is better to have a medical history of all the truck drivers in the company. Drug use is not a problem only for other people in other professions, but it can be a fatal problem for truck drivers.

Equipment failure

This does not happen very often, but it may happen sometimes. Due to some manufacturing defect or because of other defects that develops while running, equipment failure may happen and that may result in truck accidents. That is why, proper maintenance and monitoring of the trucks and other equipment used in transportation should be done, so that no accidents happen due to equipment failure.

Front brakes depowering

This is another reason of truck accidents. Many truck drivers think that if they use the front brakes, there is more tear and wear of the tires and brakes and so they do not use it very often. Instead, they use trailer brakes. They also use downshifting as a measure of stopping the truck. However, if front brakes are not used, downshifting and using the trailer brakes will not help you to stop the truck, specially during crucial times. This is a habit which probably need some research and possible changing.

References
1. Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts
2. The Effect of State Regulations on Truck-Crash Fatalities