Every year we read about and witness many road accidents that vary in magnitude and effect. The US state department has reported an average of 5, 00,000 truck accidents every year , most of which happen in rural areas. Over the years, truck manufacturing and logistics companies have tried to include a lot of safety measures to prevent these accidents, but there are other causes that go unnoticed and lead to major truck accidents. Let’s take a look at some of these causes that contribute to truck accidents regularly.
• Statistics show that in the year 2006-2007 more than 70% of the truck accidents happen because of the passenger vehicle and not the truck itself. Most often car drivers do not gauge the visibility, turning radius and the braking speed of a truck. This leads the truck driver to swerve or swing out in order to avoid a fatal accident, thereby causing an accident of the truck itself.
• Fatigue is another major cause of truck accidents. Truck drivers drive for hours together on rough roads or highways. This tends to tire the body especially the hands and feet from maneuvering and constantly using the brake and accelerator pedals. This can be avoided by taking little breaks on the way or by switching drivers through the journey.
• In order to reach the destination quickly or because the road is good, some truck drivers tend to over speed and overlook road safety measures. The problem arises when the vehicle has to brake suddenly because the brake time for such a large vehicle isn’t relatively quick enough to avert an accident.
• Maintenance of the vehicle and proper training for the drivers is crucial. It is mandatory for the trucks to be serviced often. Pre-inspection can avoid hazards such as trailer disengagement, brake failure and other technical issues in the trucks. A driver also needs to be aware of the route he is taking as unexpected bends and curves on highways can lead to accidents as well.
• Another leading cause that is reported is the drug abuse that many drivers resort to. Be it consuming off prescription drugs to avoid being sleepy or administering illegal drugs for an extra boost, drivers resorting to these contribute to almost 24% of truck accidents in the year 2006-2007.
These accidents can be averted by simple measures such as proper training for the drivers, taking them through video demonstrations of accident prone situations and how to avert them. Companies should also medically examine their drivers fit for long journeys apart from just inspecting their vehicles’ maintained conditions.
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