In many places, traffic is heavier now than it has ever been. With so many people on the roads it can be difficult to avoid accidents, no matter how safe of a driver you feel that you are. As a driver, you can do your best to prevent accidents from occurring by being as cautious and attentive as possible. However, it’s impossible to predict the actions of others on the road, and there’s no way to know if other drivers are being as attentive as you. Mistakes will likely be made, and it’s best to be prepared if that does happen.
Accidents involving large trucks or tractor-trailers can cause even more damage due to the size of the vehicle. According to Florida truck accident attorney Ronald Rosen, many truck accidents involve negligence of some kind on the part of the driver or employer, the truck owner, the cargo company or truck maintenance crew.
Tips to Avoid Truck Crashes
Check out these 5 common causes of truck crashes and how you can avoid them.
1. Driver fatigue
Many large trucks endure long-haul drives, which can lead to fatigue while driving. Florence, SC truck accident lawyer Ronald Jebaily says that one of the leading types of truck crashes is running off the side of the road or out of the lane. This can happen easily if a driver is fatigued and starts to doze off at the wheel. If possible, try to keep out of the way of trucks on the road. Though trucks have plenty of mirrors, do your best to stay out of their blind spot—creating a good distance between your vehicle and the truck.
Rear-end collisions are a common type of crash often caused by speeding. If a truck is speeding, they shorten their reaction time to stop the vehicle. Because they have such a large load, it takes an even longer time to slow down as well. Stay attentive while driving, and if you see a large truck speeding up behind you, check other lanes or the shoulder to see if either option is safe to gently switch into.
3. Brake problems
Brake problems can also lead to rear-end collisions or running off the road. It’s impossible to tell whether or not a truck driving near you has brake problems, so the safest option is to create enough space between the two vehicles so that you’re in the clear if something goes wrong.
4. Traffic congestion
No one enjoys the stop and go of bumper-to-bumper traffic, and it can feel even more nerve-racking when a large truck is behind you. See if you can slide into another lane so you’ll be out of their way if another sudden stop has to be made.
5. Cell phone use while driving
Sideswipes of vehicles going in the same direction are another common type of crash. Again, there’s no way of knowing whether or not a driver is looking at his or her phone or simply being inattentive while behind the wheel. The best practice to avoid possible accidents in this case—and in most cases—is to simply keep your distance.
A Final Note
According to Howard Spiva, a trucking accident injury lawyer in Georgia, one of the most important things legal council can do in the case of a crash is request immediate access to the event data recorder in the truck. This provides information from vehicle and engine speed to cruise control status and steering angle. Gathering as much information as possible will help you get the compensation you deserve.