Large trucks, such as 18-wheelers, are likely to cause serious injuries to drivers in smaller vehicles when accidents happen. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention note that most drivers log over 100,000 miles per year on the road, increasing the risk for accidents due to driver fatigue and speeding to meet delivery deadlines.
While these trucking accidents are often deadly, there are several steps the industry can take to lower the risk and keep their drivers, as well as others on the road, safe from harm.
Many trucking accidents happen due to driver drowsiness and the push to meet tight delivery deadlines. While some trucking industries pride themselves on quick delivery options, this may increase the risk of accidents as the drivers rush to meet stringent deadlines. Trucking company owners may reduce the chance of serious wrecks in several ways, including:
- Extending the time between deadlines
- Increasing driver awareness for fatigued/drowsy driving
- Implement safety programs and award employees for safe driving
Spacing deadlines and ensuring drivers follow safety rules may increase road safety, especially on roads that see heavy trucking traffic.
Many trucking companies have a relatively short training period for new drivers, and some even pride themselves on how soon new drivers hit the road with their loads. However, a lack of experience and training may mean more accidents and serious injuries for drivers and those who share the road with them. Increased or lengthened training time, with a focus on safe driving, may help new drivers gain the confidence they need on long-distance jobs.
Many big rig crashes occur when drivers become fatigued or distracted. While other factors cause crashes, such as bad weather, truckers’ driving habits and education can play a significant role as well.