Fatigue Is A Big Factor In Trucking Accidents
Because of just how big a commercial truck is, when these vehicles get into accidents, they cause a whole class of property and bodily damage unto themselves. It’s one of the reasons why the specifics of an accident with a truck may often require the legal attention of a law firm with people experienced in the unique characteristics of a truck-related accident.
It’s not just the size of a truck that makes these vehicles such distinct cases. Because trucks are designed specifically to haul freight and are only on the road for commercial purposes, this brings in many unique considerations in terms of cause, consequence and the final outcome of a lawsuit. For example, there’s one specific cause for trucking accidents that far outweighs its counterpart in normal car-related accidents, and that is fatigue. But why?
People may get into cars and drive for any number of reasons, including going to work, getting groceries or just driving out to the movies or restaurant. But truck drivers are on the road for just one reason; to deliver a sizable bulk of goods to a destination within a certain amount of time. The more they can deliver, the more money they make.
So, unlike a tired employee who may be driving back from a late night at the office, and, feeling tired, decides to drive to the side of the road and take a nap before continuing, truck drivers don’t exercise this option. They know that they get paid as long as they drive, and so they drive for as long as they can… and even when they’ve long passed the point where they shouldn’t drive, they continue to do so.
In some cases, drivers may even consume certain drugs and/or stimulants in order to maintain alertness and try and stay on the road longer. It’s a practice that is undertaken throughout the professional trucking industry, and even though management may publicly say they don’t condone these actions, the result of “looking the other way” for drivers that indulge in this means more work is getting done.
Get It Checked
This is why, if you should find yourself in an accident with a truck, you should make inroads about investigating the state of alertness of the truck driver. Even if the accident occurred in the middle of the afternoon, you can’t be sure that this accident occurred because the driver has been on the road all night, and is finally feeling the effects of trying to ignore fatigue.
Fortunately, getting the proof you may need to show that the driver is fatigued may not be as hard as it once was in the past. Many professional truckers now use GPS systems to track their progress, which means that the truck itself may have the evidence you need to show the vehicles has been on the road, with an increasingly fatigued driver for far too long.
And if you have that evidence, you should definitely think about contacting an experienced attorney in trucking accidents to see what your legal options are.