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The Most Common Causes of Truck Accidents

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Posted on April 11, 2023

Truck accidents pose a significant threat in Utah. These massive commercial vehicles, weighing thousands of pounds, can cause catastrophic damage, resulting in severe injuries, extensive property damage, and even death. While there are a variety of factors that can contribute to a truck accident, some causes are more common than others.

#1: Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is a leading cause of motor vehicle collisions across the country and can be incredibly dangerous. Truck drivers may be distracted by cell phones, GPS systems, radios, or other devices while operating their vehicles. These distractions can cause the driver to take his or her eyes off the road, leading to a serious accident.

#2: Fatigued Driving

Fatigue can impair a driver’s reaction time, decision-making abilities, and overall alertness. Truck drivers often have to drive long hours to meet delivery deadlines, which can increase the risk of fatigued or drowsy driving.

While federal trucking regulations impose limits on the number of hours that a truck driver can operate without a break, not all companies or drivers abide by these rules. Fatigued driving can lead to the driver falling asleep at the wheel, drifting into other lanes, or failing to respond quickly to road hazards.

#3: Equipment Failure or Defects

It is the responsibility of the trucking company to ensure their equipment is properly maintained and in good working condition. Equipment failure or defects can be catastrophic, leading to severe collisions. Brake failure, tire blowouts, or other equipment failures can cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle and injure others on the road.

#4: Improper Loading

Improper loading of cargo is another common cause of truck accidents. When cargo is not properly secured, it can shift during transport, throwing off the balance of the truck and causing it to tip over or jackknife. To prevent this, truck drivers and companies must ensure that cargo is properly secured before the vehicle goes out onto the road.

#5: Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is not only a serious criminal offense—this behavior can heighten the risk of a serious accident. Impaired driving can cause the driver to make reckless decisions, lose focus, and impair their judgment. Unfortunately, some truckers turn to substances to get them through long hauls, often leading to devastating consequences.

#6: Dangerous Road Conditions

Road conditions can also play a role in truck accidents. Potholes, construction zones, and other hazards can make it more difficult for drivers to maintain control of their vehicles. In some cases, poorly designed roads can contribute to accidents.

#7: Inexperience or Improper Training

Truck drivers need proper training and experience to operate their vehicles safely. A driver who lacks experience or has not received proper training can make critical mistakes on the road, such as failing to brake in time, making turns too sharply, or failing to adjust their driving to the weather conditions. If a trucking company hires an inexperienced driver or fails to train a driver properly, it endangers everyone on the road.

Injured in a Truck Accident? Speak to an Attorney

Truck accidents can have devastating consequences. If you were involved in one of these collisions, it is essential to speak with a truck accident lawyer right away. Truck accident cases can be complex, and an attorney can help you navigate the legal system and recover the compensation that you deserve. Schedule a free case consultation as soon as possible to discuss your case and plan your next steps.