Being Aware of Truck Accident Risks on Your Daily Commute
Many of us share the same weekday routine. We get up early in the morning, get showered and dressed, then grab a quick breakfast before kissing our families goodbye and heading off to work or school. We put in our day, then make the return trip home, thinking about dinner or our plans for the evening. Most of us are unaware of the fact that we are putting our lives on the line during each of these trips. Weekday traffic commutes are the most common time for truck accidents to occur. Unfortunately, for thousands of motorists each year, these accidents end up proving fatal.
Fatal Truck Accidents
Due to the large size and weight of most trucks and tractor trailers, collisions with car drivers tend to be severe. Traffic studies indicate that while statistics for truck accident injuries have slightly declined over the past several years, the number of deaths has continued to rise.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), roughly one out of every ten traffic deaths is due to truck accidents, claiming approximately 4,000 lives each year in the U.S. In the majority of these cases, it is drivers in other vehicles who face the most serious risks. In fatal accidents, other motorists and their passengers are four times more likely to be killed than the driver of the truck, regardless of the type of collision or how the accident occurred.
A common misperception is that driving on major interstates or at night and on weekends increases your risks. While this generally may hold true for other types of crashes, for truck accidents it is actually the reverse:
- The IIHS reports that daylight hours during the week are the most common time for fatal truck accidents;
- The busiest days of the week for truck accidents are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays;
- You are more than twice as likely to be involved in a truck accident between the hours of nine to five;
- More than half of truck accidents occur on local roads and highways.
Reducing Your Accident Risks During Your Commute
The trucking industry website American Trucker states that the higher number of accidents that occur during weekday hours is not surprising, when you consider the greater numbers of vehicles on the road and the increased likelihood of driver distractions:
- Truck drivers are likely to be focused on getting to their destination, or on meeting tight schedules and loading/unloading deadlines;
- Motorists may be running late, or focused on work, school, or family issues;
- Both truck drivers and other motorists are less likely to pay attention on routes they frequently take, and may fail to notice clues that an accident is about to occur.
You can help reduce your risks of being involved in an accident by remaining vigilant during your commute and avoiding distractions, such as using cellphones to text, talk, or email while behind the wheel. When an accident does occur, contact the Wexler Law Firm, P.A. for help. We provide the trusted legal representation you need to help get the compensation you deserve. Call or contact our West Palm Beach office online to request a consultation today.