Are Tired Truckers Causing More Crashes?

Trucker yawning

Truck driving is a difficult job. Each morning, America’s 3.5 million truckers get on the road and drive coast to coast for 11-14 hours per day. With so many hours behind the wheel, truck drivers are bound to daydream or even doze off. When that happens, the outcome can be devastating for all involved. But how often does this happen? Are tired truckers causing more crashes?

Hard Evidence

There are about 450,000 trucking crashes each year between America’s 3.5 million truck drivers. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, about 13% of those crashes (54,000 per year) are the direct result of a driver falling asleep at the wheel.

The same annual report found that nearly half of all truck drivers admit to driving while fatigued or while nearly too tired to continue. But why are truck drivers taking such an unnecessary risk?

Worked to the Bone

Truck drivers work on a tight schedule. They’re expected to meet strict deadlines so they can get another trailer and get back on the road. In a world of next-day delivery and package arrival tracked to the minute, any delay on the truck driver’s part reflects badly on their carrier.

If anything unexpected happens out on the road such as traffic, a crash, or dangerous weather, the truck driver may be expected to make up for that lost time. That means more hours behind the wheel, sometimes going over their maximum daily hours of service.

As they enter another hour behind the wheel, the temptation sets in to close their eyes for a single moment. The results are disastrous for both the trucker and the safety of everyone around them.

If you or someone you love suffered severe injuries or even wrongful death in a trucking accident, we can help you get serious. If you’d like an experienced Gulfport auto accident attorney from Gulf South Law Firm to evaluate your case, please send us an email or call (228) 231-3989.

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