Busy Massachusetts and Rhode Island highways like Interstate-195 through New Bedford, Fall River, Seekonk to Providence, or Route 24 up through Taunton, Bridgewater and Brockton see a great deal of traffic every day and night. Commuters heading to and from work share the road with commercial vehicles heading to and from various cities and towns delivering goods and carrying loads. Factors like distracted driving and drowsy driving cause commercial vehicle accidents which in most cases leave the operators of the smaller vehicles with catastrophic personal injury and all too often death.
Common Causes of Commercial Truck Accidents
As we mentioned before, being involved in a truck accident can be a life-changing and sometimes fatal event. It’s always a good idea to drive defensively around trucks on the highway. There are a number of factors which can contribute to commercial vehicle accidents. Let’s look at a few of them.
Distracted Driving – Distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, so it should come as no surprise that it is also a leading factor in commercial vehicle accidents. For many truck drivers sitting in the cab and driving their eighteen-wheeler for hours on end begins to feel like second nature, so naturally when boredom sets in the temptation to look at things like social media and text messaging arise. Like many other drivers, some truckers give in to this dangerous practice.
Drowsy Driving / Trucker Fatigue – Though there are federal regulations which limit the amount of time a commercial truck driver can log driving per week, truck drivers who burn the candle at both ends are likely to become drowsy behind the wheel. Scheduled routes often include hundreds, sometimes thousands of miles, and this can wear on even the most experienced drivers. Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving.
Speeding Truck Drivers – The trucking world is a world of traffic and deadlines, so it’s no surprise that truck drivers are tempted to speed. This is very dangerous with truckers since the vehicle they’re driving can weigh 20 times more than the average passenger vehicle. When a big rig is speeding it may not be able to slow down or react suddenly to another vehicle in its path.
Unsafe Driving Practices – In addition to speeding, many truck accidents are caused by unsafe and aggressive driving practices including:
- Road rage
- Failure to check for blind spots
- Frequent lane changes
- Failure to use turn signals
Poor or Improper Truck Maintenance – Any equipment malfunction on a big rig can result in a deadly truck accident. Trucking companies can be held responsible for a trucking accident if faulty equipment is found to be to blame.
- Improperly maintained safety equipment
- Faulty brakes
- Tire blowouts
- Lost or poorly secured loads
Contact An Experienced Truck Accident Attorney in Massachusetts and Rhode Island
If you’ve been injured in a car accident due to the negligence of a truck driver, do not hesitate to speak with one of our experienced attorneys to discuss your options and learn what your case is worth.
*The above is not to be considered as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws which apply may differ from state to state.
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