Six Most Common Causes of Serious Truck Accidents
Accidents involving large trucks are on the rise, increasing by nearly 20 percent over the past two decades. Because of the size and weight of these trucks, crashes can be particularly devastating to those involved. In 2012, 10,093 people were killed in truck accidents and 25,000 people were injured as a result of crashes with large trucks.
While many people assume fatigue is the main factor in truck crashes, the most common cause is actually drug use, contributing to 26 percent of all crashes. Truck drivers’ use of prescription and illicit drugs affect their ability to react and maneuver large vehicles, thus increasing the likelihood of a serious crash.
As with most auto accidents, speed is a major factor in truck crashes, accounting for about 23 percent of all crashes. Another common issue is fatigue. Truck drivers are often asked to travel hundreds of miles every day, which can take a toll on their physical and mental alertness. When drivers are fatigued, they are far more likely to make a mistake resulting in an accident.
Additionally, even professional truck drivers sometimes violate common traffic laws, such as forgetting to use a turn signal or not fully stopping at an intersection. These mistakes, just as with any driver, can lead to a crash. Studies reveal that 9 percent of all truck accidents were the result of an illegal traffic maneuver by a truck driver.
Distractions are a major contributor to truck accidents. Any activity that takes a driver’s eyes and attention away from the road increases the likelihood of a crash. Distractions such as cell phones, food and loud passengers may play a role in these accidents.
When a crash involves a truck, there are a number of parties who may be liable, including drivers, trucking companies and equipment manufacturers. For the assistance you need after a serious truck accident, consult a dedicated Lake County injury attorney.