Driving a tractor-trailer is a serious responsibility, and the majority of drivers are very careful. However, commercial truck drivers are prone to the same errors as those driving passenger vehicles. The consequences, though, are often far more deadly than crashes only involving passenger cars, which is why proving truck driver negligence is often essential in a personal injury case. The behaviors and signs listed below may point to a pattern of negligent, unsafe driving.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a truck accident and you suspect the driver was acting recklessly, the Detroit truck accident lawyers with Davis Injury Lawyers, PLLC can help determine what happened and how to hold the right party accountable. Free consultations and no cost unless you recover compensation: (313) 818-3238.
Speeding or Reckless Driving
Speeding is still a significant problem for truck drivers. While many companies now use speed trackers or speed limiters on company vehicles, smaller trucking firms may not yet have this technology available. Speeding is a dangerous behavior for any driver, but for a trucker driving a vehicle that is 20 times larger than the average passenger vehicle, it is downright negligent.
Other signs of reckless driving may also point to negligence. Random lane changes, failing to adhere to posted signs, or otherwise ignoring the rules of the road should be reported to your lawyer.
Aggressive or Distracted Driving
Being on the road for long stretches of time can make some drivers prone to road rage or aggression. This is exceptionally dangerous for truck drivers, since their choice to cut off another driver or follow too closely could have fatal consequences. Signs of aggressive driving include failing to yield right-of-way, tailgating, using the horn to indicate anger, and blocking lanes.
Distracted driving is another issue to watch out for. Any driver can cause enormous damage if they engage in distracted driving, but a truck driver who takes their eyes off the road for a few seconds could cause multiple fatalities and tens of thousands of dollars in property damage.
Hours of Service Violations
Truck drivers and companies must follow strict Hours of Service regulations. These regulations aim to keep fatigued drivers off the road and provide proper breaks so that drivers can remain focused. Some violations occur because of company scheduling practices or company culture, while others occur because individual drivers do not want to lose time or delay their arrival.
For example, a commercial driver cannot drive for more than 11 hours at a time after a break of at least 10 hours. They may not clock more than 60 hours over a seven-day period or 70 hours over an eight-day period. Violations of these rules are often easy to track, due to trucking logs and GPS trackers. Drivers must also take regular breaks to rest and refresh their minds before getting back on the road.
A History of Accidents
Any driver can be involved in an accident, but if the same driver has been involved in multiple crashes, that indicates a pattern of unsafe or inattentive behavior. Your lawyer should be able to find out whether or not the driver who caused your crash has also been involved in other accidents. This may point to driver negligence and company negligence, as the company has a duty to employ trustworthy drivers.
Positive Drug or Alcohol Test
This is perhaps one of the most egregious signs of a negligent truck driver. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is dangerous across the board, but given the damage a tractor-trailer can cause, commercial drivers who drive under the influence often face serious criminal charges. Most companies mandate a thorough drug and alcohol screening after a crash, and your lawyer will be able to request the results.
Hurt in a Trucking Accident? Turn to Davis Injury Lawyers.
A trucking accident can leave you with serious injuries, a totaled vehicle, and a long road of recovery. It is important to hold the liable party accountable for the damage they cause. However, you cannot trust their insurance company to do what is best for you. That’s where we come in.
The team at Davis Injury Lawyers, PLLC will thoroughly investigate your accident, gather evidence, and fight aggressively on your behalf. Take the first step now by filling out our online contact form or calling us at (313) 818-3238.