Unfortunately, the holiday season from Thanksgiving through New Year’s tends to be one of the most dangerous times to year to be on the road. Each holiday sees more fatal road accidents than your average day. Of course, road accidents during the holidays are not limited to collisions between passenger vehicles. Commercial trucks can also be involved in crashes, with truck accident rates also seeing a similar spike over the holidays.
Common Causes for the Spike in Trucking Accidents
Some of the factors that contribute to the rise in the number of trucking accidents include:
- Increased numbers of trucks on the road – With everyone doing extra shopping in-store and online for holiday gifts, truckers need to do double duty during the holidays to get gifts and goods where they need to go.
- Fatigue – Due to the extra demand on the trucking industry, truckers can easily begin to experience fatigue, especially if they decide to exceed the hours-of-service regulations that are designed to feel drowsy or fatigued truck drivers off the road.
- Tight schedules – Truckers may feel pressure to pack their schedules as tightly as possible to earn extra money during the holidays. However, this may end up causing drivers to speed or compromise safety in an effort to meet demanding delivery deadlines.
- Bad weather – In much of the country, the holiday season can see adverse weather conditions that makes roads dangerous for heavy, lumbering 18-wheelers that can’t maneuver or stop as quickly as a smaller passenger vehicle. In addition, the holiday season has some of the shortest days of the year, which means that truckers are spending even more hours driving before sunrise or after sunset.
- Lack of training – Due to the high demand for cargo transportation, trucking companies may need to bring on extra drivers to keep up with all the work that needs to be done. Due to the fact that the trucking industry has been suffering a labor shortage for years now, some trucking companies will turn to inexperienced drivers to help fill the gaps.
Tips for Staying Safe on the Road During the Holidays
Tips for drivers to follow to help reduce the chances of being involved in a trucking accident this holiday season include:
- Give large trucks plenty of room – The best thing you can do to avoid a collision with a truck is to give them room on the road. Trucks need extra room to slow down and maneuver, and they have large blind spots that passenger vehicles can get lost in. Never tailgate or cut directly in front of an 18-wheeler. If you need to pass a tractor-trailer, do so quickly but safely, never driving alongside a truck longer than necessary.
- Avoid blind spots – Although newer trucks sometimes come with blind spot mirrors, cameras, and sensors to help truck drivers know when a vehicle is in their blind spot, you can protect yourself by never staying within a truck’s normal blind spots, which include directly in front of the truck, directly behind the truck, and just behind the doors of the truck cab. If you stay in a trucker’s blind spot, they won’t know that you are there in the event they need to make an emergency maneuver.
- Slow down – You can help make truckers’ jobs easier by refraining from speeding or driving recklessly around large trucks. Driving in a safe, predictable manner enables a truck driver to safely plan their vehicle’s movements.
Contact a Lake Worth Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Truck Accident Case in Florida
Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a truck accident in Florida? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Gonzalez & Cartwright, P.A. represent clients injured because of truck accidents in Miramar, Coral Springs, Davie, Lake Worth, Boca Raton, and throughout Florida. Call (561) 533-0345 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 813 Lucerne Ave., Lake Worth, FL 33460, as well as offices in Pompano Beach.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.