Truck drivers have a demanding job. They spend days at a time on the road, driving long hours delivering products and goods we use on a daily basis. While their job is definitely worthy of respect, it also carries certain obligations. Motorists in Portland rely on many of the same roads and face significant risks when encountering tractor trailers, semi-trucks, and other big rigs. When truck accidents happen, they are the ones who generally suffer the most severe injuries. Unfortunately, the truck driver is often to blame. The following details four reckless behaviors on the part of truck drivers that often contribute to these crashes.
Dangerous Driving Behaviors on the Part of Truck Drivers
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), roughly 5,000 people die in truck accidents each year while tens of thousands of others suffer serious personal injuries. The massive size and weight of most big rigs generally provides a level of protection for the truck driver. In more than 70 percent of cases, the NSC reports that it is other motorists who suffer the most serious harm.
Sadly, most of these crashes could have been prevented. While adverse weather, heavy traffic, and road construction all increase the risk, reckless driving behavior on the part of truckers is often to blame. This includes:
1. Impaired Driving
Impaired driving is a leading cause of crashes among all types of drivers, but truckers are at an increased risk. Long hours on the road and time spent away from family can cause them to abuse alcohol, drugs, or even prescription medications.
2. Drowsy Driving
Drowsy driving is a major problem on U.S. roads and mimics many of the same effects as driving under the influence. In addition to increasing the risks of falling asleep behind the wheel, it can result in delayed reflexes, impaired judgement, and reduced reaction times. According to the National Sleep Foundation, the long hours truckers put in makes them among those most likely to be affected.
3. Aggressive Driving
When you are tired, irritable, and eager to reach your destination, it can be easy to lose your cool behind the wheel. Unfortunately, this can cause you to make dangerous errors in judgment and act out against others on the road. With truck drivers, speeding, tailgating, improper passing, and failure to yield are all common aggressive behaviors that increase truck accident risks.
4. Distracted Driving
Truckers frequently rely on CB radio dispatches and GPS devices during their shifts. Unfortunately, glancing at these devices, taking a hand off the wheel while changing settings, or even attempting to eat a meal while driving makes truck accidents more likely to happen.
Our Portland Truck Accident Attorneys Are Here To Help
If you have been injured in a truck accident, the Johnston Law Firm P.C. is here to help. We hold truckers accountable for reckless behaviors that leave you suffering serious injuries. Call (503) 546-3167 or contact our Portland truck accident attorneys online to request a consultation today.