Many people consider factors such as speeding, fatigued driving, and distraction as causes of truck accidents in Hollywood and Florida. While it’s true that these issues cause many truck accidents each year, experts say that something as seemingly innocuous as lack of parking spots can lead to trucker fatalities and collisions.
When truck drivers need to stop on the road, they can do so at hotels or at truck stops. However, some drivers find themselves far from these types of accommodations. If they arrive early at a supplier’s property or delivery site, for example, they may find that parking areas are fenced off or inaccessible. This leads some truckers to stop in abandoned lots or in overcrowded rest stop areas, where collisions or problems can occur. Some truckers have found themselves robbed or attacked because they did not have a safe place to park. In other cases, truck drivers have found themselves in parking lot accidents due to lack of adequate parking.
A Shortage of Parking
According to the American Trucking Association, there is a shortage of well-lit and safe legal parking spots for truck drivers, even though federal laws require truckers to take rests and break stops more often than ever before, making parking even more important. The problem is occurring all over the country and according to industry experts the problem puts truckers and other road users at risk.
Polls and studies have shown that truckers along the California stretch of Interstate 5 routinely find truck stops full when they try to take a break. A study from the Federal Highway Association found that areas along the I-40 in New Mexico and Arizona saw truck traffic of over 10,000 commercial vehicles a day but truck-parking spots in the region only accommodated 300 trucks.
With more trucks expected on the roads in the near future, the problem is likely to get worse. Already, truck drivers say that truck stop spots are hard to find. And in many cases these areas are overcrowded, leading to frustration and collisions as tired truckers try to wedge their vehicles into the few available parking spots.
When truck stop parking spots are not available, some truck drivers choose to park in illegal spots rather than risk driving fatigued. This has its own problems, of course. Vacant malls, areas behind shopping centers, freeway ramps, and other illegal parking areas are poorly lit and trucks full of cargo can be a target for thieves. Passenger car drivers may also be at risk if large trucks park on ramps or in shopping mall parking lots, since the trucks can obscure visibility or may be an unexpected obstacle for another driver.
Clearly, more needs to be done to create more safe rest areas for truckers so that we can address fatigued driving and crimes that target truckers.
If you have been injured in a trucking or parking lot collision, contact Flaxman Law Group for a free consultation. Our attorneys have more than six decades of combined experience both in the courtroom and in insurance negotiations. Together, we have recovered more than $100 million on behalf of thousands of clients. Meet with us in a free consultation to find out how much your potential case might be worth.