Drivers in Washington know that safety features on cars are always improving. In recent years, the number of deaths associated with collisions involving most passenger vehicles has gone down. But at the same time, the number of fatalities linked to large truck accidents has been increasing. In fact, 2019 was the deadliest year in three decades for this type of collision.
Risk factors for collisions
Many of these large motor vehicle accidents are linked to driver error. Distractions on the road have never been more prevalent, especially now that many drivers have smartphones. Today’s truckers are expected to be connected at all times.
Another issue is fatigue. Truck drivers are under pressure to complete their routes on time. Although they’re advised to take ample breaks and stay refreshed, the reality is that this doesn’t always happen. That’s particularly true when large truck drivers have to make several stops. Drowsiness and highway hypnosis can make it difficult for truck drivers to stay focused.
The pressure to be on time can also lead some truck drivers to take unnecessary risks. They may drive too fast or not leave enough stopping distance while on the road. Large trucks over 10,000 pounds can quickly become deadly if they’re going too fast.
Many players in the trucking industry would like the government to investigate large truck accidents. It’s been over a decade since the last large truck crash causation investigation. Drivers should also feel empowered to whistle-blow if they’re being scheduled too tightly to take proper breaks.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a large truck collision, it may be a good idea to retain a lawyer. Insurance company lawyers work for their employers, not for accident victims, so motor vehicle accident victims may need their own advocates to help them secure adequate compensation.