Size matters when it comes to driving. One in 10 deaths on our roads involves a truck, despite the fact that commercial vehicles only account for 4% of the traffic, according to figures from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
It’s no wonder that the car drivers usually come off worse in a collision with a truck. It’s like a flyweight boxer taking on George Foreman, or you standing in the way of a stampeding buffalo.
Modern truck driving is a far cry from how you saw it depicted in films like “Smokey and the Bandit” or “Every Which Way But Loose.” Nowadays, truck driving is a high-pressure job with tight deadlines, fast turn arounds and a lot more traffic to contend with every day than most people realize.
Driver fatigue is a common cause of truck accidents. The constant time pressure means truck drivers often do not get enough sleep because their schedules do not allow it. When they do get sleep, it comes in short bursts rather than eight-hour blocks.
Distracted driving is another significant cause of accidents. While Clint Eastwood had to cope with a distracting orangutan while driving, these days, it is more likely to be technology that distracts a modern truck driver. Whether phones, navigation systems or delivery software, truck cabs are full of screens and devices which remove the driver’s attention from the road.
If you are unlucky enough to have an accident with a truck, it is likely you will suffer personal injuries. It is important to understand the legal courses of action you can take.