The possibility of dying in a truck crash has always been a hazard to the trucking industry. The greater length of time a commercial truck driver spends on the road exposes that driver to numerous situations that could prove to be deadly. However, the statistical trend in recent years has shown that the number of trucking accidents that kill drivers has increased annually. As an example of that trend, truck driver deaths increased seven percent from 2015 to 2016 in the United States. Moreover, the total number of truck driver fatalities made truck driving the deadliest profession in the country.
People who are unfamiliar with the stressors of driving a truck for a living might assume that driving a commercial truck is easy. However, that could not be more distant from the truth. Commercial truck drivers must combat fatigue and illness, poor truck maintenance, improper cargo loading, poor road conditions, bad weather, reckless motorists, drunk or drugged motorists, and defective truck parts while trying to make a living. Most people do not have to combat those problems when they go to work every day.
Despite all the dangers that truck drivers face, including careless and reckless drivers in their own profession, trucking companies add to the stress with demanding schedules and unrealistic delivery times. Trucking companies can pressure their drivers to violate safety rules and press on despite overwhelming fatigue or while experiencing malfunctions with the critical systems of the truck just to make a delivery out time. Trucking companies would rather pay a fine imposed by a local Department of Transportation then lose an account because the delivery was late. Fines for speeding, driving after daily hourly limits, and with safety, infractions are merely the cost of doing business for large trucking companies.
Truck drivers can collect damages for injuries sustained in a trucking accident. Truck drivers who are injured or the families of truck drivers who were killed in accidents may collect damages from their employers, independent contractors, entities responsible for loading trucks, and manufacturers of defective parts, as well as other motorists, including other truck drivers.
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