According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the number of fatal truck accidents increased between 2011 and 2012. In fact, the total number of trucking accident fatalities across the country jumped by 140 – to 3,921 fatalities – during this time period. Surprisingly, the number of truck drivers increased to 697 in 2012, an increase from 240 truck drive fatalities in 2011.
In response to the figures, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) evaluated what might be causing the serious trucking accidents across the country. The agency identified three main factors that could be causing trucking accidents in Homestead and other cities across the country:
1) Fatigue. Truck driver fatigue in Homestead and other cities is a known risk factor in traffic crashes. Tired drivers are more likely to make dangerous mistakes that lead to an accident. They may also fall asleep at the wheel, entering oncoming lanes and causing head-on crashes in Homestead and other cities. According to the FMCSA, long-haul truckers face tight delivery deadlines that may cause stress and may push some drivers to scrimp on sleep. Last year, the FMCSA changed hours of service rules to address this problem. Under the new regulations, truck drivers must have one 34-hour rest period per week before starting a new work week, and work weeks are now limited to a maximum of 70 hours of work.
2) Speeding. When truck drivers speed, they can easily lose control of their vehicles, especially when heavy cargo is involved. In addition, trucking accidents involving speeding are more likely to lead to multiple-vehicle accidents, fatalities, and rollover accidents in Homestead and other communities. The FMCSA has proposed new rules that would mandate speed limiters on trucks in order to prevent speeding.
3) DUI. According to the FMCSA and the National Transportation Safety Board, approximately 35% of truck drivers who suffer fatalities in crashes have illegal drugs of alcohol in their blood at the time of the collision. Illegal drugs used by truck drivers include marijuana, cocaine, and amphetamines. Currently, urine tests are required of commercial truck drivers in order to detect drug use. However, the Senate has been looking at proposed laws which would allow hair testing, instead. This can help discover habitual drug users and is considered a more accurate type of drug testing.
If you have been injured in a trucking collision, contact an attorney. You may face a long period of healing and rehabilitation, and this process can result in significant costs for you and your family. The attorneys at Flaxman Law Group can help advise you as to any compensation you may qualify for. Flaxman Law Group is a full-service law firm and our attorneys have access to many resources that can help build your case. In addition, our attorneys have more than sixty years of combined legal experience as well as a track record of recovering damages on behalf of clients. If you would like to know whether you have a case, schedule a free, no obligation consultation with Flaxman Law Group today.