Dangers of Fatigued Truck Drivers
The number of fatalities from truck crashes and accidents with 18 wheelers and commercial vehicles continues to rise. While there may be several reasons for this, fatigued driving continues to be a very serious safety issue for truck drivers and anyone using roads and highways in Kansas City, Missouri or Kansas. This behavior is particularly dangerous when it involves drivers of large commercial vehicles such as tankers, semi-trucks, trucks, and truck-trailers.
Drivers of large commercial trucks and vehicles must take extra precaution to stay awake and alert while driving or they can be held responsible for causing a destructive and potentially deadly truck accident or crash. A truck driver who is drowsy or who falls asleep will bear the liability and legal repercussions of a truck accident that can cause serious injuries or even death.
Figures on Drowsy Driving
It is dangerous for any driver to drive while tired or sleepy. It is, however, more dangerous for truck drivers and drivers of heavy-duty vehicles because crashes involving them cause much more damage and are more likely to be fatal.
A research known as the Large Truck Crash Causation Study carried out by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reported that over 200 deaths and 1,654 serious injuries have resulted from more than 12,000 accidents involving commercial trucks over a period of about three years. Over 70% of these accidents resulted from the collision of large commercial trucks with one or more other vehicles and about 13% of them were as a result of drowsy driving.
Truck drivers spend a lot of time on the road in service of their employers or businesses. As a result, the federal government has instituted certain regulations to put a limit on the length of time they can spend on the road each day. These regulations are known as the “Hours of Service” rules. Unfortunately, truck drivers do not always follow these rules, and in doing so, they put both their lives and those of other road users at risk. This failure stems from the fact that the trucking industry is very competitive and the goods in transit must be delivered within strict time standards.
Some repercussions of driving while sleepy or tired include:
- Delays in responding to hazards due to slower reflex responses,
- Memory loss and reduced focus on driving,
- Less directional control and irrational driving from mood swings,
- Poor judgment on speed, brake application and dealing with other vehicles, obstacles and turns, and
- Distraction and loss of attention on road and other road users.
When a driver violates Hour of Service rules and causes a crash with other drivers, he or she has to face the legal consequences of any damage, injury or death that may result. If the employing company is found to be responsible for the accident by pushing its drivers to work beyond permissible limits, the company also can be found liable for any damage that might result.
Call Our Kansas City Truck Accident Lawyer
Our Kansas City truck accident lawyer understands the regulations that govern the trucking industry and how to use these rules to maximize the available insurance recovery for victims of truck accidents. Our law firm will conduct a complete investigate of the accident, negotiate with insurance companies and navigate your claim through the legal process to ensure you obtain the justice you deserve.
Call us for a free, no obligation consultation at (816) 203-0143. You can also fill out the form below. It is important that you act quickly to protect your claim and legal rights.