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Leading causes of truck accidents

Driving a truck requires an increased level of care due to how dangerous accidents can be. The size and weight of these vehicles alone have the potential to do significant damage in a crash. There is also the element of what the truck is carrying that could potentially cause even more harm. As a result, there is a requirement of attending training and receiving a special driving license to operate a truck.

Truck accidents are rarer than standard vehicle accidents. That said, these crashes still claim thousands of lives every year. While these statistics have dropped significantly in the past 20 years, truck accidents still resulted in 4,102 deaths in 2017. Understanding the most common causes for trucking accidents can help drop these statistics even further.

Driver fatigue

Truckers drive many hours every week, so it should come as no surprise that fatigue tends to have a significant impact on the number of accidents that occur. There are federal regulations to help prevent issues associated with fatigue, but these rules can only do so much. Managing your sleep and staying on schedule can help avoid accidents associated with fatigue.

Distracted driving

Distracted driving has become a serious issue for everyone that operates a motorized vehicle. Long hours on the road can only magnify this problem. It’s very easy to zone out or try to sneak a peek at your cell phone while driving on an open road. Staying alert and keeping focused are the best ways to prevent an accident.

Maintenance issues

Truck drivers put hundreds of miles on their vehicles almost daily. Naturally, the general wear and tear on trucks is significant and requires consistent maintenance. Drivers are responsible for undergoing regular maintenance checks to assure that their vehicles are road safe. Failure to do so is not only against code but could result in an easily preventable accident.

Bad weather

Bad weather can make driving an oversized vehicle even more difficult. Rain, ice and snow in particular can make controlling your truck very challenging. Keeping a proper distance and understanding how these conditions affect your vehicle can be the difference in preventing accidents. You can’t control the weather, but you can control your preparation.

Traffic violations

Truck drivers must exercise a greater level of control on the road due to the amount of damage their vehicles can cause. Unrealistic scheduling and poor business practices can lead to drivers committing traffic violations to finish their job on time. Speeding, illegal turns, frequent lane changes and other unsafe driving practices can lead to easily preventable accidents.

Accidents are always going to happen but doing your part to avoid preventable mistakes can make the roads much safer.

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