Preventing Truck Accidents Is Everyone’s Responsibility
Truck accidents happen with frightening regularity. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) noted approximately 415,000 commercial truck accidents in 2020 that were reported to local law enforcement. This number breaks down to over 1,100 commercial truck accidents happening every single day that year.
Only about 1% of the total number of commercial truck wrecks were deadly. However, the potential for serious or fatal injuries is present in every crash involving a large truck. Therefore, the best way to reduce the number of heavy truck injury accidents is to focus on efforts for truck accident prevention.
How Private Motorists Can Promote Truck Accident Prevention
There are a number of practices that drivers of passenger cars and other vehicles can do to reduce the likelihood of a truck accident. For example, you can:
Give Large Trucks Plenty of Room on the Road
First, drivers should give plenty of space on the road to trucks. This means a motorist who follows a truck too closely may place themselves in danger of a crash. In the same way, a motorist who cuts off a truck doesn’t realize the amount of space such a large vehicle needs to stop. In both cases, the risk of a truck accident increases.
Avoid Lingering in a Truck’s Blind Spots
Some commercial vehicles have cameras that give truck drivers a better view around their tractors and trailers. However, older models of commercial trucks only have mirrors to help a driver look for nearby traffic. These mirrors do not allow a truck driver to see everywhere, and staying in a place the driver cannot see is dangerous.
A truck’s blind spots are right behind the trailer and alongside the trailer. You should not spend much time driving in these areas if you can help it. A good rule of thumb is that if you cannot see the rig’s mirrors, the truck driver cannot see you. As you move from the truck’s blind spots, watch for the truck driver making any sudden movements.
Report Unsafe Drivers
Suppose that you come upon an unsafe tractor-trailer driver while driving. In this case, try to report that driver to law enforcement or the company the driver works for. If you are riding with a passenger, that person can take down the truck’s information. Then, you can report the driver at the earliest opportunity.
Truck Accident Prevention for Truck Drivers
Those who drive large commercial trucks are also responsible for promoting truck accident prevention. In addition to driving safely and obeying traffic laws, these drivers can help reduce truck accidents by:
Getting Plenty of Sleep Before Driving
The FMCSA and other agencies identify drowsy driving as one of several factors that can lead to truck accidents. By getting enough sleep and rest before driving each day, drivers can help ensure they are alert and able to react to any traffic conditions they encounter.
Truck drivers should follow the rules placed upon them regarding how long they can drive and how long they must rest.
Staying in Good Physical Health
Medical conditions like diabetes that are not under control can also pose a danger to the trucker and others. A trucker who faints or cannot control their rig for even a moment risks a major accident.
Even if these accidents are not intentional, they can still cause the same type of damage that accidents resulting from inattentive driving or speeding can cause.
Therefore, truck drivers can promote truck accident prevention by keeping on top of their health. If you are a trucker, opt for regular check-ups and appointments and ensure you manage any chronic conditions properly.
Inspecting Your Equipment Regularly
Lastly, truckers should not trust their mechanic or company to maintain their truck. Instead, they should take an active role in inspecting their vehicle and looking for potential issues.
Worn tires, defective wiring, or other equipment issues can become significant problems later. Identifying them before the truck hits the road can save the trucker’s life and the lives of others.
Speak to a Truck Accident Attorney About Your Case Today
Not all truckers will follow truck accident prevention best practices. And sadly, this means that tragic accidents will continue to happen. If you or a loved one suffered injuries due to a negligent trucker, a truck accident attorney can help.
At The Joel Bieber Firm, we fight hard to protect the rights of truck accident victims. Contact The Joel Bieber Firm today to learn what we can do for you.