In Tennessee, commercial truck drivers work long hours and may be distracted by many things beyond their cell phones. Truck drivers should avoid distractions while they are driving so that others who are traveling nearby will be safer. In addition to cell phones, drivers may be distracted by others who are traveling with them, eating, dispatch equipment, billboards, people outside of their trucks and more. By understanding the potential for and danger of distraction, drivers may be better able to focus their attention on the road and minimize their risks of causing accidents. A semi-truck accident lawyer may help victims who have been injured in crashes caused by distracted truck drivers.
Distractions to Avoid
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 71 percent of crashes involving large trucks that were caused by truck drivers happened when they were engaged in other activities besides driving. By remaining focused on the roads, truck drivers can help reduce the risk of accidents. While cellphones are responsible for a large percentage of distracted driving accidents, a number of other activities are also distracting to truck drivers and should be avoided.
One of the leading causes of large truck crashes is driver inattention that results from distractions outside of trucks. These can include billboards, people, buildings and others. In 2006, a study found that as many as 80 percent of large truck crashes involved truck drivers who were inattentive within 3 seconds of the accidents.
Texting while driving is notoriously distracting, and it is illegal for commercial truck drivers. When people text and drive, their manual, cognitive and visual attention are all directed away from the road. Drivers should likewise not use their dispatching devices while they are driving. Instead, they should pull off of the road when they need to use these tools.
Some activities that might seem innocuous, like eating or drinking, are also highly distracting to truck drivers. One recent study found that driving while eating might be even more dangerous than driving while talking on a cell phone. It is better for drivers to wait and eat on their breaks.
Driver distraction is a huge problem that can lead to preventable accidents. A semi-truck accident lawyer may gather evidence that shows driver distraction caused truck accidents.