All of us have been on the road at some point in time with the big trucks. Sharing the road with semis is something that all of us accept if we spend any time at all on America’s highways. Trucks are still one of America’s main forms of transportation for commercial good and products. Without them, and the drivers that are willing to pass their days over the road, we would not have the variety of produce, meats, clothing and household goods that we enjoy today. The truth is that we are dependant on these rolling behemoths to bring us the goods and products that we use every day. What do who know though about who is driving these trucks and whether or not they are taking required safety precautions? What happens when one of the drivers pushes their body too far – past the point at which the body must rest?
The fact is that each year truck accidents kill over 5,000 people and injure another 150,000 on America’s highways. According to one report, one in every four multiple-vehicle accident involves a large truck. Large trucks are involved in vehicular accidents twice as often as passenger vehicles resulting in over 800 drivers of large trucks dying each year. Despite the stringent requirements for obtaining a commercial driver license, it appears as though truck drivers are still involved in a disproportionate number of accidents each year. Commercial truck drier’s are required to complete a rigorous hands on training school as well as pass background checks, drug test, driving tests and written tests before they can obtain a commercial driver license. So why are these highly trained and screened drivers still getting into accidents?
One of the leading causes of truck driver accident is fatigue. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is charged with overseeing large trucks on American roadways. The FMCSA tells us that in recent years, as many as 750 people were killed and another 20,000 injured as a direct result of driver fatigue. Long hours on the road can take its toll on a driver. Although the federal government has set strict regulations regarding the number of hours a driver can spend on the road, drivers continue to reach the point where fatigue takes over and they loose control for that split second-just long enough to cause an accident. In a passenger vehicle, if you start to lose control you can generally gain back the control rather easily if you react quickly enough. In a large truck, however, once you start to lose control getting it back may be impossible due to the sheer size and weight of the truck. As a result, thousands of Americans are injured or killed each year due to the negligence of a driver that was simply too tired to drive.
Whether the driver himself made the decision to keep on truckin’ or whether his employer was pushing him on, the bottom line is that if you were involved in an accident with one of these “kings of the road” and you believe that accident may have been caused by fatigue, then you may be entitled to compensation for any injuries that you suffered. Contact the California truck accident law firm of Ledger & Associates at 1-800-300-0001 or visit them online for more information at www.ledgerlaw.com.