In today’s booming economy, more and more large commercial trucks are hitting the roads each year, creating an influx of catastrophic crashes involving large commercial trucks and passenger vehicles. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, fatalities involving large commercial trucks have increased 9 percent from 2016 to 2017. Furthermore, the majority of these tragic fatalities were either occupants of passenger vehicles or pedestrians.
Truck safety has always been a concern, but with the increase in deadly crashes, it is becoming a growing phenomenon, and these four hidden causes of deadly truck crashes may be to blame.
It goes without saying that driver errors such as speeding and driving under the influence account for a considerable number of large truck crashes. However, the cause of a crash is not always immediately apparent and may require further investigation to uncover. A study by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) lists the four hidden factors below among the most prevalent and deadliest causes of large truck crashes.
1. Manufacturer defects, neglecting regular upkeep, and faulty maintenance jobs can cause brake problems that lead to a wreck. If you’ve been hurt in a crash, we at Bordas & Bordas have the expertise to launch an investigation to determine whether the crash is the fault of a manufacturer, owner, mechanic, or another party.
2. Illegal drugs are often an obvious cause of wrecks, but over-the-counter medication can also impair a driver. And it is significantly harder to identify as the cause of a crash. Many allergy or cold medicines have side effects such as sleepiness, dizziness, or blurred vision, and some even explicitly state not to operate motor vehicles while taking them. The right questions need to be asked, along with a preservation letter asking that such information be preserved.
3. Fatigue is a major cause of crashes and can be caused by lack of sleep, unhealthy work hours, medications, or medical conditions. For truck drivers especially, fatigue is one of the highest causes of large truck wrecks. Long hours take a huge toll on drivers, who then make poor judgment calls such as pushing through rather than making a stop to rest and recover.
4. One of the more complicated causes listed in the FMCSA’s accident study is that a high number of truck drivers involved in crashes blamed high levels of stress as a major factor in their crashes. These drivers were under pressure from their carrier and felt compelled to drive unsafely to meet their employer’s demands. This is an error in both the company’s and driver’s judgment, and a lawyer can undertake a careful investigation into the company to expose this underlying issue.
Have you or a loved one been injured in a large truck crash? As a leader in commercial carrier/trucking litigation, the attorneys at Bordas & Bordas can help you uncover the real cause of your crash and hold the appropriate parties responsible.