Driving a tractor-trailer truck can be a difficult, dangerous job. Truck drivers need to remain in complete control of massive vehicles that move at high speeds, and any mistakes they make can have deadly results. Because of these risks, truck drivers and trucking companies are required to follow multiple safety regulations that are meant to prevent truck accidents. Unfortunately, these accidents continue to occur, and even though large trucks make up only four percent of vehicles on the roads, they account for 10 percent of all vehicles involved in fatal collisions. Even though the trucking industry has taken steps meant to prevent accidents, ongoing problems that affect truck drivers have led to increasing instances of driver fatigue and other issues that may lead to dangerous and deadly collisions.
Dangerous Trucking Industry Practices
A recent story in the New York Times looked at the issues that affect truck drivers and the difficulties they face. According to this story, the trucking industry has implemented a number of safeguards meant to prevent accidents. Drivers are closely monitored to ensure that they are following the correct safety practices. Sensors track the movements of trucks, the number of hours that truckers drive, the ways they operate their vehicles, and even the movements of their eyes to ensure that they remain focused on the road.
Unfortunately, while this surveillance is meant to improve safety, it has made truck drivers’ lives more difficult, leading to high levels of turnover. In 2019, the turnover rate was 91 percent. With so many truckers quitting to find other forms of work, more drivers need to be hired to ensure that goods can be shipped and delivered throughout the United States. This has led to more inexperienced truck drivers on the roads, increasing the likelihood that drivers will become involved in accidents.
While monitoring of truck drivers is meant to ensure that truck drivers are acting safely, it has not addressed a fundamental problem that has led to driver fatigue. Since truck drivers are typically only paid for the number of miles they drive, they often end up working long hours in addition to their driving time. On average, truck drivers work more than 60 hours per week, and many drivers have reported work weeks of over 100 hours. Even if these drivers are following hours of service regulations that limit the amount of time they can spend behind the wheel, they are likely to experience exhaustion that affects their ability to safely operate commercial vehicles.
Contact Our Appleton Commercial Truck Accident Attorneys
Unfortunately, many of the industry practices described above are meant to protect trucking companies from liability, and they do not address the serious problems that may lead to truck driver fatigue or other issues that can cause truck accidents. Those who are injured in these types of accidents may struggle to receive compensation, since trucking companies may claim that they have followed all applicable laws and regulations.
At Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd., we provide representation for victims of truck accidents, helping them demonstrate that their injuries were caused by negligent truck drivers and trucking companies. We can investigate the circumstances of a truck accident to gather and preserve the necessary evidence, including reviewing truck drivers’ logs and other data, as well as obtaining witness statements, police reports, 911 call recordings, and video footage from traffic or security cameras. To learn how we can help you pursue compensation for your injuries, contact our Green Bay truck accident lawyers at 920-739-7366 and schedule your free consultation.