Truck drivers have a very high-risk workplace because they’re on the road for often more than 10 hours a day, nearly every day of the week. Local drivers, cross-country drivers, and even those with dedicated routes still pose a danger to everyone on the road. But, there are drivers who are more of a threat and knowingly put others on the road at a high-risk. If you’ve seen any of these behaviors, you need to take swift action before it results in an accident where you will need a truck accident attorney.
Substance Abusing Drivers
It’s no surprise that someone driving for ten to twelve hours a day is likely to use substances, even something as simple as coffee. But, when you energy pills available at every 7/11 counter or harder drugs available in every metro area, it’s even less surprising to learn that drivers could be intaking much more than coffee or a Red Bull.
Among the most common are amphetamines, alcohol, and caffeine or ephedrine in high doses. In the United States, about 12.5% of truckers tested positive for alcohol tests. When drivers use these drugs to stay awake or to fight road hypnosis, they put everyone on the roadway at risk.
Drivers Who “Work” Their Hours
Before technology became so present in the industry, it was clear that drivers were manipulating their hours and logbooks. The result was that drivers who were restricted to driving for so many consecutive hours or hours within a given period would make it appear as if they had taken breaks when they had not.
Now the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has helped companies and truckers understand their restrictions and the electronic tracking that monitors them. That doesn’t mean that truckers still haven’t found loopholes that permit them to drive in sleep-deprived states. Truckers may fit into an 11 or 14-hour driving limitation. Does that seem unreasonable? To most people it is, you would never spend 14 hours at work without taking some form of a break, especially if you were driving that entire time.
But what becomes more of a danger to everyone on the road is when drivers schedule those 14 hours to hit at certain state lines, or at certain times that reduce the break, they must take between 14-hour shifts.
Truckers With Too Many Distractions
Truckers now have gaming consoles, tablets, computers, and more in their cab. The large belief is that these are present for downtime where they relax, play a game, or watch a show as they rest between their shifts. However, when you don’t have someone else in the car, then you have no guarantee that they’re not using these devices during their drive time.
Watching movies while driving is far more distracting than listening to the radio or an audiobook as it demands visual attention. Other distractions, however, can include eating behind the wheel or engaging with a passenger if they have a partner. These distractions cause many of the truck accidents that you see on the roadway, and they can lead to serious injuries or even fatalities.
Trucking Companies that Make Unsafe Repairs
Outside of the truckers, immediate control is their repairs. Working with a diesel vehicle is different, and working on these big rigs calls for specific mechanics. Unfortunately, many trucking companies don’t keep the resources they need for quality repairs. Truckers are often instructed to make any reasonable repairs roadside or take it to a local auto shop.
The truckers in these situations often have little control when it comes to who services their rig. These mechanics may not work on big rigs often or may not have the experience necessary to make appropriate or correct repairs.
If a faulty mechanical repair causes a wreck, then the driver is often left trying to manage an out of control rig to the best of their ability. But the lack of structure in big rig repairs is something that can put every driver and passenger in grave danger.
Contacting Tampa Accident Lawyers After Your Wreck
In Tampa, FL, there are plenty of truckers involved in wrecks, and usually, those wrecks are life-changing or even resulting in fatalities. Don’t allow a truck driver who was a clear and present danger to everyone on the road get away with anything short of the absolute maximum penalties and payouts.
At Winters and Yonker, our law offices fight as a strong group of auto accident lawyers in Florida. Our legal team goes through every possibility and dives deep into the driver’s behaviors to understand exactly how the crash happened and what went wrong. Contact us now to have a legal professional get started on your claim.