Due to a semi-truck or tractor trailer's massive size and weight, collisions involving these huge vehicles often result in devastating accidents, serious injuries, and fatalities. Compared to other motor vehicles, commercial trucks carry a substantial amount of cargo, which makes them more dangerous on the road.
The following are the most common causes of truck accidents:
- Driver error – According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), driver error is ten times more likely to be the cause of a collision compared to any other factor. Driver fatigue, distracted driving, or substance abuse are the most common contributing factors to accidents caused by driver error.
- Equipment failure – Equipment failure is the second leading cause of commercial truck accidents. These accidents typically involve errors in design and manufacturing, such as defective tires or faulty reverse-detection warning devices. However, companies and drivers alike are responsible for inspection and maintenance of their truck throughout the year. Unfortunately, the rules and regulations are often ignored, resulting in many truck accidents.
- Improper loading – When the truck’s load is not configured or distributed in a safe manner, it can either result in an imbalance, causing a truck to topple over, or the contents of the load to spill into the roads.
- Weather conditions – When the roads are wet or icy due to inclement weather, it can be difficult to maneuver any vehicle, especially one with a massive amount of weight and size. Big trucks don’t have the ability to stop quickly or steer as easily as cars.
- Hiring of a negligent driver or company – Shippers who need their product transported by trucks often contact a truck driver or company without checking to see if they or their trucks are up to federal standards.