America is a sleep-deprived country. The costs of that, when it comes to increased risk of crashes, are undeniable.
The problem is most acute for truckers who have obstructive sleep apnea. One recent study found, for example, that drivers who have this condition are five times as likely to be involved in crashes.
Truckers must ensure they get enough rest and stay focused
In other words, trucker fatigue is a preventable cause of semi-truck crashes. When truckers get behind the wheel of a semi truck tired, they might not be able to react properly to what is going on around them – with devastating consequences.
Along the same lines of fatigue is distraction. When truckers don’t give their full attention to operating the semitruck, they can’t ensure they are driving safely. They may drift in an out of the lanes or fail to go with the flow of traffic.
Loads must be secure and semis must be in good condition
Some trucking accidents don’t have anything to do with the way the trucker is driving. If the load on the truck isn’t secured properly, the items on the trailer might shift. This could lead the trucker to lose control of the vehicle or it could send the cargo flying into other vehicles or onto the roadway. All of these situations could lead to a crash.
Crashes can also happen if the semi trucks aren’t in good condition. During the holiday season when deliveries seem a bit more urgent, the trucks companies put on the road might not be checked and maintained like they should. This is likely due to the companies trying to keep as many trucks on the road as possible. Unfortunately, when components of the truck fail, the trucker might not be able to control the truck. For example, when brakes fail, the trucker can’t stop and might slam into other cars.
Sadly, there will likely be accidents involving semi trucks throughout the busy holiday season. The men and women who are injured in these crashes could need medical care and may have to take time off from work. They might decide to seek compensation for the accident, which means they need to determine who is liable for the damages.