When you think of driving, whether in your normal work commute or on an extended road trip to a vacation destination, what dangers do you think of those most? For many drivers, staying alert for construction zones and watching for others driving dangerously on the road are important ways to stay safe while on the road. However, there is a major danger that some people overlook, even though it is quite large.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, approximately 1 in every 10 highway deaths occurs in a crash involving a large truck. These big vehicles can be a key player in accidents; are you paying enough attention to large trucks to keep you and your family safe?
Trucks cause a large percentage of vehicle fatalities and injuries due to a variety of reasons. First, the sheer size of a truck can increase the severity of the crash. Most trucks weigh at least 20-30 times as much as a typical car, meaning that even a low speed crash with a truck can cause significant damage. The size of trucks can also make braking more difficult than a regular passenger vehicle. Trucks needs more distance to come to a complete stop and quick braking can sometimes be nearly impossible for emergency situations.
Drivers of trucks can also contribute to dangerous situations if they are fatigued. While regulations state that truck drivers cannot be behind the wheel for longer than 11 hours at a time, there are surveys that have shown drivers can stretch this timeframe to meet deadlines. Fatigued drivers react more slowly and can cause more accidents.
Additionally, nearly three-quarters of trucks involved in crashes had some identified vehicle defects during post-crash inspections.
To stay safe and keep yourself from becoming a statistic of a truck involved accident, be sure to always give yourself plenty of space when driving near, or passing, a large truck. Staying out of their large blind spots can also help you to avoid an accident.
If you are involved in an accident with a truck, be sure that you not only seek medical intervention quickly, but also the representation of a lawyer who can get you the compensation that you need and deserve. The team at O’Brien Law is experienced with advocating for clients who have been a victim of truck accidents, and we would be honored to help you.