Even though it’s not always easy to share the road with commercial trucks, you have no choice. There will be times, especially on the interstate, where you find yourself in close proximity to many of these vehicles.
As a driver, your goal is to maintain a high degree of safety at all times. By understanding the most common causes of accidents involving cars and commercial trucks, you can define a strategy for avoiding trouble.
Here are some things to watch for:
- Drowsy driving: This is a particularly big problem during the evening hours, especially if a trucker has been on the road all day long.
- Drunk driving: Any driver, not just those operating a commercial truck, will have a difficult time making sound decisions if they are under the influence of alcohol, drugs or prescription medication.
- Distracted driving: With more potential distractions than ever, this remains a major problem. A trucker could talk on their phone, grab a bite to eat or send a text message, all when they should be watching the road ahead of them.
- Reckless driving: Not all truck drivers follow the rules of the road. Excessive speeding is one of the most common forms of reckless driving, with many truckers doing this as a way of making up for lost time.
- Unrealistic schedules: Trucking companies often set unrealistic schedules for drivers, which has the potential to result in speeding and/or spending too many consecutive hours behind the wheel.
While these are among the more common causes of car-truck accidents, there are many other situations that can lead to trouble on the road.
The best thing you can do is remain alert at all times. If you see a trucker swerving, for instance, assume that there is something wrong and maintain a safe distance.
If you’re involved in a traffic accident, call 911 for help. You want police to quickly arrive so they can control traffic, make sure that anyone who is injured is attended to and create an official accident report.
Once you’re on the road to recovery, take the time to review the circumstances of the accident. Doing so will help you better formulate a plan for protecting your legal rights by holding any negligent party or parties responsible.