Factors That Play a Role in Today’s New Jersey Truck AccidentsNew Jersey Legal News
Commercial trucks are some of the largest vehicles on our roads, which is why these drivers are held to such a high standard duty of care. In the blink of an eye, a truck could collide with a passenger vehicle or another type of small vehicle, causing catastrophic and even fatal results to the parties involved. Because truck accidents are on the rise on New Jersey roadways, it is imperative to look at the many factors that play a role in causing most of these accidents today.
By understanding how and why you or your loved one have been impacted by a truck accident, you will be able to move forward with a claim for compensation during one of the most challenging times in your life.
Main Causes of New Jersey Truck Accidents
Driver Fatigue: The truth is, truck drivers are overworked on our roadways and a lot is expected of them, which can put them in a position where they are especially tired. A study was conducted in 2007 by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that found that fatigue was a critical factor in approximately 13% of all accidents involving large commercial vehicles. By taking a look at these statistics, it shows us that something must change and more must be done.
Truck drivers hit our roads and drive for long periods of time for many hours with no rest breaks in between on many occasions. Owners are requesting goods at large rates, which means that trucking companies are forced to keep up with these demands, which might put their employees in a difficult and even dangerous situation when they push them past their limits. Truck drivers feel under pressure at times, which can cause them to fall asleep at the wheel, leading to deadly accidents.
Intoxication: Drunk and drugged driving is no stranger to truck accidents, which means that regulations must be put in place to ensure that all drivers of these large vehicles are driving as safely as possible and not operating a vehicle while intoxicated. In the U.S., the legal limit of BAC in a driver is .08%. For truck drivers, however, .04% is the legal limit. Even one beer could trigger a reading that could lead to a charge and put a truck driver’s entire career at risk.
Truck drivers have also been known to use illegal drugs at times, which could alter their perception of the roadways and put many other people in harm’s way. On top of that, the simplest of prescription drugs can sometimes take hold and cause a variety of side effects that can make driving dangerous. If you are not supposed to take a drug and drive at the same time, then you should never operate a truck while on these prescriptions.
Lack of Proper Training: Truck drivers don’t just drive for a day and then suddenly hit the roads. No, it takes months and months of the proper training before they are permitted to drive on the roads with their CDL in hand. There must be a certain amount of hours and time put in to meet minimum requirements as a truck driver and, without those hours, a truck driver is not legally permitted to drive one of these large commercial vehicles. If a trucking company does not keep these requirements in mind and chooses to hire a driver who has not completed these hours of training, then they could be putting others at risk.
Lack of Maintenance: Truck drivers are also supposed to ensure that all trucks are in top condition before they allow them onto the roadways. The problem comes from many companies who choose not to invest in safety and do not properly maintain their trucks. When somebody is making deliveries, they could easily lose a tire or their brakes might not work, which can lead to sudden death in another party who is impacted by these mechanical failures. Poorly maintained trucks and lack of training in drivers are two of the main reasons why truck accidents occur in New Jersey and beyond.
Speeding: As stated previously, trucking companies have been known to push drivers to their limits, even if it means putting them in unsafe positions at times. This means that they might push a truck driver to speed to their destination so that they can meet certain goals even though they seem impossible. However, due to poor weather conditions and traffic, this is not always possible. Suddenly, a speeding truck driver loses control and causes a serious accident because they were told to reach their destination as quickly as possible, which can put the trucking company right in the middle of liability. A speeding truck up against a small passenger vehicle can lead to sudden and fatal results.
Distracted Driving: Because truck drivers are putting in many hours on our roadways, they are regularly looking for things that will keep them occupied and alert. However, in doing so, they might also be taking risks, as distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents every year across the U.S. Some of the main ways that truck drivers engage in these acts include texting and driving, changing the radio frequently, eating, and even talking to passengers who might be in their vehicle at the time. If for one second, a truck driver removes their eyes from the road, it could spell out fatal results.
If You Have Been Impacted by a New Jersey Truck Accident
The aftermath of a truck accident might be one of the scariest and confusing times in your life. If you believe that a truck driver is liable for your New Jersey truck accident, you might need the experience of a personal injury attorney to walk you through this difficult time. At Brady, Brady & Reilly, our accident attorneys are here to protect your rights and walk you through the barriers that might be standing in your way after one of these complex and serious accidents. Please reach out to us at (201) 997-0030 for the help you deserve at this time.