There is a reason why many drivers feel nervous around large commercial trucks. The sheer size and weight of semi-trucks is enough to inflect a massive amount of damage to multiple cars in a single crash. All it takes is a simple misstep, error in judgment, mechanical failure, or drowsiness.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) — a federal crash investigative agency — recently addressed the safety concerns surrounding large commercial trucks in recently-issued truck fleet safety card.
What safety tips does the NTSB offer?
The NTSB first cited NHTSA crash statistics showing approximately 4,951 traffic fatalities in 2018 across the United States. That is a nearly six percent increase from 2016.
The agency then offered safety tips. The tips are based on its previous crash investigations. Truck drivers and fleet owners should be reminded of (or educated on) these tips on a regular basis.
There are three key areas the truck fleet safety card offered safety tips on. These include:
- Human error: The NTSB urges drivers to stay attentive, comply with federal laws regarding cellphone use, obey posted speed limits, slow down during hazardous weather or road conditions, and avoid driving while impaired by drugs and/or alcohol. To avoid drowsy driving, drivers should also take frequent breaks and practice healthy eating and exercising habits.
- Crash prevention technology: The card suggests that trucking companies and fleet owners install underride guards, speed limiting technology, and collision avoidance technology on all trucks. Truck drivers must also be trained on how to use these technologies.
- Health issues that contribute to crashes: Trucking companies should screen drivers for sleep apnea, which is a sleep disorder that can lead to daytime drowsiness. Other health issues that can lead to medical events (heart disease and high blood pressure) should also be addressed. For all drivers, guidelines should be put in place to help prevent drowsiness.
What if a trucking company or driver failed to uphold these obligations?
Trucking companies and the drivers they employ have a duty to uphold on the road. While many of them practice safety measures and comply with federal regulations, some do not. As a result, other road users suffer serious or fatal injuries.
If you were hurt in a truck crash, or lost a loved one, because of the negligent actions of a truck driver or trucking company, don't hesitate to seek legal help from an experienced East Texas truck accident attorney.
Attorney Jeff Weinstein knows how to investigate truck crashes and negotiate with insurance companies for a fair financial settlement. If the insurance companies refuse to budge, he'll be ready to take them to trial.
Contact Weinstein Law online or call 903-677-5333 to schedule your free consultation. We serve clients in Henderson County.