Semitrucks are giant behemoths that cause catastrophic injuries and damages whenever they get into a crash. To make an analogy, an 18-wheeler getting into a collision with a compact car is like a mountain versus molehill. This is why strict federal laws exist to govern the driving habits and maintenance standards that apply to truck drivers and their vehicles.
Unfortunately, in spite of these laws, truck accidents are everyday occurrences on our nation's roads. Many of these crashes are the direct result of truck driver negligence or unlawful behavior relating to issues such as:
-- Trucker fatigue: Truck drivers are limited to driving for a certain amount of consecutive hours. They must receive specific amounts of rest each day, which can vary depending on how many days they've been on duty, and how many consecutive hours they've been on duty. Failure to follow these regulations can result in a fatigued truck driver who could fall asleep at the wheel or have poor reaction times.
-- Distracted driving: Truckers get bored, especially on long-haul trips. This can result in them resorting to using smartphones, watching movies and even reading books and magazines when they're supposed to be paying attention to the road. Obviously, this is unlawful and a recipe for disaster.
-- Errors in judgment: Sometimes a mistake is innocent, and sometimes it's downright negligent. When a truck driver takes unnecessary risks by speeding or changing lanes recklessly and committing traffic violations, it might qualify as negligence when it results in a serious crash.
-- Impairment: Whether it's alcohol, illicit drugs or abuse of pharmaceuticals, when truckers get high behind the wheel, it is perhaps the most dangerous activities they can engage in.
Were you injured in a commercial truck crash due to one of the reasons above? Virginia drivers and passengers hurt in truck accidents can speak with the legal team at The Law Offices of Locklin & Coleman to determine if they have viable claims to pursue financial compensation in court.