Driving a truck is not an easy job. It’s very exhausting to be on the road all the time, which explains why truck drivers are known to sometimes cause accidents. And since trucks are really big compared to other vehicles you can find on the road, it’s only logical that these accidents tend to result in major damage and serious injuries.
But while it’s easy to simply blame tired truck drivers, a number of factors can be involved. Sometimes weather or road conditions play a part. Other times a defective part or improper maintenance can be the culprit. Once in a while drunk driving is even to blame. You also have to remember than when you’re dealing with a huge, heavy truck, even seemingly minor driving errors can lead to big problems. And, of course, it’s really important to mention that a lot of these accidents actually happen because of car drivers that make driving errors in close proximity to a truck.
Below you’ll find several of the most common reasons that truck accidents occur. Hopefully this information will help teach you how to driver safer and prevent you from being involved in this type of accident.
So, why do truck accidents happen? Here are some behaviors that car drivers often engage in – so that you can avoid them!
The car driver misjudges the speed of an approaching truck at an intersection, and makes a left turn in front of the truck – It’s incredibly important to remember that trucks take time to slow down. Because of this, it’s probably best to wait for a truck to pass if you’re unsure about its speed. Remember that as soon as you start second guessing if you can make it, just stop and wait until the truck is gone to continue driving.
Unexpectedly changing lanes in front of a truck – Remember that you should always give a truck some space when you decide to change lanes in front of it. This is important because you can never know when the truck driver might decide to speed up. They need to see you in time in order to know if (and how much) they should slow down.
Driving while in the No-Zones – The so-called No-Zones are areas where the driver of the truck is less likely to notice you due to limited (and in some cases zero) visibility. There are three types of No-Zones – Side No-Zone, Rear No-Zone, and Front No-Zone. The most dangerous of these three are undoubtedly the right side No-Zones, as trucks are known to make wide right turns.
Not slowing down or speeding up when the truck starts to change lanes – Being indecisive while driving is what causes a lot of traffic accidents. When a truck driver next to you starts signaling that they want to change lanes, it’s very important that you either slow down or speed up. What’s even worse than not making a decision is changing your mind while in the process of choosing one of the two previously mentioned options.
Now it’s time to see some of the common errors truck drivers make while in traffic:
Falling asleep behind the wheel – Tired truck drivers causing accidents was mentioned above, but it bears repeating. Truckers have to constantly be on the road, and more often than not they simply don’t get enough sleep. Extreme weariness can lead to the truck driver falling asleep behind the wheel and causing an accident.
Unrealistic schedules of companies that hire the truck drivers – Why don’t truck drivers simply stop and sleep when they get tired? Because in order for them to meet their incredibly tight deadlines, they are often encouraged to keep going and drive much faster than they should. Although drivers are aware that this goes against safety precautions, they still do it because it’s often the only way to keep their jobs.
Insufficient training – Unfortunately, this is also true a big reason for accidents. These days, many truck drivers don’t go through proper training before they’re given their first job.
Hopefully, knowing this information and practicing safer driving will help you reduce the chances of getting into a truck accident. But if you or someone you love is injured in a crash with a truck due to another’s negligence, you should know what to do next. The first and most important thing to do is check to see if you or anyone around you is injured and, if so, instantly seek medical attention.
The next step you take should be contacting a skilled Florida accident attorney who will look into the incident. Your lawyer will likely have to ask you a lot of questions, so it’s helpful to prepare yourself ahead of time.
Researching and slogging through legal meetings may be the last thing you’re interested in doing after getting hurt in an accident, but it’s worth it. Medical bills can pile up fast, and that’s not even dealing with money you lose due to not being able to work and other expenses. These are things that can seriously derail your life, and if someone else is responsible, you shouldn’t have to pay for their mistake.
About the Author:
Steven Slootsky is a 1985 graduate of Nova Law School, which means he’s been a practicing Fort Lauderdale injury lawyer for more than 2 decades. He founded the Law Offices of The Injury Law Firm of South Florida in 1991. The Fort Lauderdale-based accident attorney is a member of the Florida Bar, as well as the Federal Bar for the Southern District for the U.S. District Court. During his career as a personal injury lawyer/auto accident compensation attorney, Steven has served as the co-chair of the Workers’ Compensation section for Broward County, Florida. He is also a Bronze member of the Florida Workers Advocates, a former member of the board, and serves as an “Eagle” member of the Florida Academy of Trial Lawyers.