Most people know the dangers of distracted driving. However, driving while drowsy can have a similar impact on drivers’ ability to react to hazards and drive safely. This is especially true of truck drivers, and the increased size of semi-trucks can make accidents involving these large vehicles more dangerous and often catastrophic. What is the impact of drowsy driving on trucking accidents?
How long can truckers remain on the road in a day?
Truck drivers often spend long hours on the road in order to meet tight deadlines for their customers. Because of the demands of their jobs, the federal government requires drivers to follow specific hours of service regulations to keep truckers and other drivers safe from the impact of fatigued driving. These regulations limit both the amount of time that a trucker can spend behind the wheel of a large commercial vehicle and how many consecutive hours they can drive.
How often does drowsy driving cause crashes?
Despite federal regulations, many drivers still get behind the wheel while drowsy or violate those mandates in order to meet the requirements of their job. Some of these drivers also feel pressure from their carrier to drive longer hours.
This decision to drive while fatigued can have a significant impact on both truckers and other drivers. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) estimates that 13% of big rig accidents involve driver fatigue.
While trucking crashes can be catastrophic for victims, they do not have to face the aftermath of an accident alone. It is possible for injured people and their families to hold truckers and carrier companies responsible for their part in the accident and to receive the support they need to recover.