Florida Trucking Accidents
A series of truck accidents through the Florida area over the past several months highlights the dangers drivers face when sharing the road with these types of vehicles. With little to protect them against the massive size and bulk of semi-trucks and tractor trailers, motor vehicle drivers involved in these accidents are more likely to suffer serious, potentially disabling, and often fatal injuries. The following provides information on the dangers faced by Florida drivers, as well as some of the common causes of these accidents.
Florida Third In Nation For Trucking Accidents
A recent accident that was reported by News 7 Miami in early May 2017 on the Florida Turnpike is just one in a recent series of trucking accidents that have left as many as four drivers dead while causing serious injuries for more than a dozen others. Unfortunately, this is not an uncommon occurrence in our area, as Florida has one of the highest truck accident rates in the nation.
According to the most recent studies by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Florida ranks third in the U.S. for the total number of both trucking accident injuries and fatalities that occur in the state. In Florida alone, more than 200 trucks are involved in fatal accidents each year, a number which has steadily increased over the past decade.
Our dependence on imported and exported goods being shipped to and from areas throughout the country has been a boon for the trucking industry, and it results in a greater selection of items available for purchase by consumers. Unfortunately, it does put drivers on roads and interstates throughout the country at increased risk. Of the nearly 4,000 fatal truck accidents that occurred throughout the nation in 2014, the majority of those killed in these accidents were automobile drivers and passengers.
Why Truck Accidents Occur
According to the FMCSA Large Truck Causation Survey, road, traffic, and weather conditions are often factors in trucking accidents, as is poor truck maintenance and improperly weighed and distributed loads. Driver inexperience and lack of training can also make truck accidents more likely to occur, but the most common factors were reckless driving behaviors among truckers themselves. These include:
- Distracted driving, which includes using cellphones and texting as well as eating and drinking behind the wheel;
- Aggressive driving, such as tailgating and failure to yield;
- Speeding and driving too fast for conditions;
- Disregarding traffic signs and signals;
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs;
- Drowsy driving, and falling asleep behind the wheel.
Drivers can help to protect themselves against trucking accidents by leaving plenty of room between their vehicle and any trucks on the road and avoiding driving directly on either side in the truck’s blind spots. In the event an accident does occur, contact the Wexler Law Firm, P.A. right away. Our West Palm Beach truck accident attorney has extensive experience in negotiating with trucking companies and their insurers, and can advise you on how to get the compensation you need to recover.