Here in the United States, commercial vehicles such as large trucks and semis are a huge part of our economy because they are one of the few ways to get goods from one part of the nation to another. Unfortunately, commercial vehicles account for a large number of crashes each year as well, which makes them both beneficial and dangerous all at the same time.
In many states across the nation, including here in California, truck drivers are given special training that is supposed to help them operate these vehicles in the safest possible manner. But as our Sacramento readers know, truck accidents still occur, which begs the question: why? The answer lies in four common factors that typically lead to a majority of crashes across the nation.
1.) Even though truck drivers are trained to check their blind spots before changing lanes or executing a turn, sometimes this doesn't always occur. In some cases, a truck driver can become distracted and think they looked when in fact they didn't. In other cases, the driver of a smaller vehicle could enter into a truck driver's blind spot after they have checked it. Whatever is the case, this can lead to serious accidents that almost always leave the other vehicle severely damaged.
2.) Driver fatigue is another major contributor to truck accidents in the U.S. Despite state and federal laws that penalize truck drivers who operate commercial vehicles while fatigued, tight schedules and pressure from their employer to deliver on time can force a driver into a dangerous situation for which they believe there is no alternative. Decisions such as this though can leave both a driver and their employer liable for damages, including injuries, in a crash.
3.) If a truck driver under negotiates a turn, a smaller vehicle can easily be struck or run over, causing considerable damage, including injuries. If this turn occurs when pedestrians are present, one could be struck and even killed. Cases such as this can occur when a driver miscalculates a turn before executing it.
4.) Driving in bad weather can be dangerous, but driving too fast for conditions can make things even more hazardous. This is a huge problem for truck drivers because their vehicles are so large and heavy, it may be impossible to avoid an accident. This form of negligence does leave the truck driver liable for damages though.