Staying safe on the road typically requires you to monitor your surroundings constantly for risk factors. Few things are likely to make you feel as nervous as a big truck driving close to you.
There’s a good reason that your brain fixates on that bigger, imposing vehicle. There’s no question about which vehicle will suffer more consequences if the two of you collide.
Awareness of your surroundings can help you avoid contributing to a crash with a big truck. Still, you can’t eliminate the risk of that professional driver doing something questionable at the wheel. The three behavioral habits below are all dangerous when practiced by commercial drivers.
Intentionally exceeding the posted speed limit
Commercial trucks are subject to the same speed limits as smaller vehicles or even lower ones on certain roadways. Unlike the average person on the road, a commercial trucker is at risk of losing some of their pay if they don’t reach their destination on time. If the weather or traffic factors slowed a trucker’s drive, then they might choose to go faster than they should to make up any lost time.
Reading a text message or typing out an email
Although some people think that they can become better distracted drivers, it’s never possible to safely take your hands off the wheel and your eyes off the road, especially if you’re operating a big commercial truck. No matter how much time a trucker spends driving, they still need to adhere to the federal no-text rules prohibiting them from manually using their phones while driving.
Staying behind the wheel for longer than they should
Needing to get perishable goods to a destination on time and travel requirements can push drivers to stay behind the wheel even when they feel tired or know that they have exceeded the hours of service limit for their current shift.
Drivers who feel tired, who indulge in distractions or drive too fast are more likely to cause a crash, and unfortunately, commercial drivers are not immune to making these mistakes at the wheel. An attorney can advise you of your rights if you fall victim to a reckless trucker.