One might be prone to believe that truck driving is an easy job. All you have to do is sit behind the wheel, enjoy the view and listen to some music while chatting in “trucker speak” to your pals on the CB radio, right? Not so fast. Working as a commercial vehicle driver is — in reality — a serious job with a lot of dangers and responsibility associated with it. To help counteract the dangers associated with driving a big rig, here are a few things that truck drivers can do to keep themselves and others injury-free on the road:
Get the rest you need: A fatigued truck driver is a driver who’s more likely to get into a crash. However, it’s not easy to sleep when you’re doing a long trip in a semitruck. If you’re trying to sleep in your cabin, for example, you may be dealing with an uncomfortable bed and a lot of exterior noise. Or, if you’re sleeping while your partner is driving, the quality of sleep could be dramatically diminished while you’re in motion. Take the time to investigate and resolve any sleep challenges you’re facing.
Taking appropriate rest time is also a matter of law. Familiarize yourself with the driving and rest regulations that apply to you as a truck driver and follow them to the letter.
Drive the speed limit: If there’s one thing you do as a semitruck driver, don’t speed. Also, adjust your speed around corners and make sure it’s below the suggested cornering speed, which was created for normal vehicles. Speed limits are there because (1) when you drive slower you have a better chance of navigating potentially dangerous situations, (2) you’re less likely to lose control of your vehicle and (3) if an accident does happen the injuries and damages will be less.
Since there are many unique laws that apply only to semitruck drivers, when a serious accident happens that involves a big rig, it’s important to review the facts pertaining to the accident to determine if any commercial trucking laws were violated. If an injured plaintiff can prove a violation of commercial trucking laws, it could help support a personal injury claim for damages.