Common Causes of Truck Accidents
The freight industry is a vital part of the Texas and national economies. Truck driving is, however, dangerous, and large truck drivers pose unique dangers to everyone on Texas roadways beyond the typical risks that all drivers already face. Read on for some of the more common causes of truck accidents that differ from the factors that lead to typical traffic accidents. Call a talented Beaumont truck accident lawyer if you have been hurt in a Texas truck crash.
Drowsy Drivers / Hours of Service Violations
Truckers are forced to work long, punishing hours, traveling from one side of the country to the other. To prevent truck drivers from falling asleep at the wheel, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) imposes “hours of service” (HOS) rules on truck drivers, setting limits on how many hours truckers can work in a given shift, day, and week, and how much rest they are required to take. Truckers might be motivated to ignore these regulations, however, and freight companies might turn a blind eye or even encourage HOS violations in order to finish hauls more quickly and generate more income. Truckers and trucking companies who violate HOS rules are putting everyone on the road at risk.
Unlike a typical passenger car, semis, eighteen-wheelers, and other large trucks typically carry thousands of pounds of materials while operating. Loading up the trailer of a large truck requires more care and consideration than loading the trunk of a standard car. If a truck is overloaded or the haul is not carefully installed with proper balance, trucks are liable to tip over while in motion. A truck that falls over on the freeway can cause devastating damage to any other vehicles and drivers around.
Speeding and Overtaking
Impatient truck drivers may make aggressive maneuvers on freeways to speed up their trip. Trucks that speed or aggressively try to overtake other trucks or slow-moving vehicles can take drivers unawares and cause an accident.
Poor Truck Maintenance and Training
Driving and maintaining large trucks requires more work and more expertise than operating and maintaining a typical passenger car. Freight companies are responsible for ensuring that trucks in their fleet are properly maintained and equipped with up-to-date safety technology. Moreover, they are responsible for making sure that drivers in their employ are properly trained and have the requisite experience necessary to operate large trucks. If an accident is caused by a defective or poorly-maintained truck, or because a driver lacked the proper training, the truck driver and the trucking company may be liable for damages.
Intoxicated and Distracted Drivers
In addition to the fatigue that sets in on long drives, truck drivers are also liable to get bored on long hauls. They may turn to drugs or alcohol to keep themselves alert or entertained, as well as texting, emailing, or otherwise using their mobile devices to alleviate boredom. Intoxicated and distracted truck drivers are even more dangerous than typical passenger car drivers.
Fight for the Damages You Are Owed After a Texas Truck Crash
If you’ve been hurt in a Texas truck accident, contact the dedicated and passionate Beaumont truck crash lawyers at the Gilbert Adams Law Offices for a free consultation on your case at 409-835-3000.