Leading Causes of Tractor Trailer Accidents
In the United States the trucking industry is a massive resource for the economy, raking in approximately 255 billion dollars each year. The American people rely on the trucking industry to deliver groceries, alcohol, building materials and all other types of consumer goods.
According to statistics, there are approximately 3.3 million trucks in operation on America’s roadways that log billions of miles transporting goods across the nation. Our economy would be turned upside down if these trucks weren’t in operation; therefore, they are relied upon heavily so our society can run smoothly.
Our heavy reliance on the trucking industry doesn’t come without a price. High-pressure schedules, deadlines and pressure from trucking companies and the companies they service can put undue stress on a truck driver. As a result, we pay the high price for faster deliveries by dealing with more tractor trailer accidents.
A number of truckers are under a lot of pressure to log more miles and to make more deliveries. Many truck drivers are forced to contend with driver fatigue, and many of them take drugs so they can stay awake for days at a time.
Although driver fatigue and drug abuse are serious issues involved in tractor trailer accidents, there are other factors that cause truck accidents as well. Truckers can cause accidents by drunk driving, and they can become impaired when they take certain prescription medications that cause dizziness, or drowsiness. Texting while driving is another serious issue that has contributed to all traffic collisions, whether they involved a small passenger car or truck, or an 80,000 pound tractor trailer. The problem is that when a truck driver makes a mistake while driving, the extent of the injuries and the property damage are far greater because of the tractor trailer’s massive size and weight.
Around 500,000 trucking accidents occur in the United States each year, and approximately 5,000 of those accidents wind up in fatalities. The majority of the fatalities in tractor trailer accidents represent the drivers and passengers of the other vehicle, not the truck driver.
Trucking companies are supposed to abide by federal regulations when it comes to maintenance and proper loading. When a truck is improperly maintained, or when a truck is improperly loaded, it can spell disaster for other drivers and pedestrians around them if something goes terribly wrong.
Although most truck drivers are safe drivers, there will always be the minority who disregard safety rules and speed, or follow too closely behind other motorists. If these reckless truck drivers operate their vehicles while fatigued or while under the influence of methamphetamines, their unsafe driving patters can be magnified, thus increasing the chances of injuring someone around them.
If you or someone you love were seriously injured in a tractor trailer accident, you should contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. It can be very easy to be intimidated by a large trucking company if you handle it alone, you could also encounter needless delays, or have to contend with a low-ball settlement offer. All of which are likely to happen if you handle your claim on your own. An Atlanta personal injury attorney will be able to go up against the company for you, so you can focus on healing and receiving proper medical attention. Your lawyer will have the legal expertise and the experience you need to pursue maximum compensation, and they can make sure that you aren’t taken advantage of by the insurance company.