According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), while truck accidents are common in the United States, Florida is among the nine states with half of the fatal crashes. In many cases, drivers and occupants of smaller vehicles are the most affected, suffering various losses.
Florida continues to have truck accident fatalities in the US year after year. Florida’s semi-truck accident rate is greater than the national average when compared to commercial truck accidents in other states like Texas and California.
In trucking accidents, since trucks are 20-30 times more giant in size than smaller cars, passenger vehicle occupants are usually the most injured or affected. Trucks also have undercarriage clearance, which sometimes smaller vehicles can get trapped underneath.
In addition, the National Highway Traffic Safety reports that most truck collisions in Florida occur in rural areas. These kinds of car accidents are common in South Florida. Interstate 95 receives more than 300,000 cars every day on the state’s Atlantic Coast.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
- Fatigue. Driver Fatigue is one of the most prevalent causes of trucking accidents. Truck drivers often drive for long hours resulting in extreme exhaustion and inadvertently falling asleep behind the wheel. This number one cause of truck accidents can be prevented. In Florida, truck drivers must take a 30-minute consecutive break for every eight hours of cumulative drive time. Drivers who do not obey this law are liable for negligence.
- Lack of Truck Check-up and Maintenance. It is a truck operator’s responsibility to check and maintain their respective trucks in order to address mechanical failures or issues. For instance, the braking system on a large truck requires specific air pressure based on the truck’s load for it to function properly all the time. In that case, operators should never forget to check and ensure all mechanical features of the truck are properly working before driving. This is for the safety of the driver and anyone on the road.
- Driving Under the Influence. Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is also a cause of trucking accidents. This behavior is an offense in Florida. The state’s law provides that drivers must operate their vehicles with less than .08% blood alcohol concentration (BAC). However, it halves the number for commercial drivers who must operate with less than .04% BAC. Truck drivers fall under the latter category.
- Over speeding. No matter what type of vehicle, speeding is dangerous and a common cause of Florida truck accidents. A fully-loaded trailer needs 525 feet to stop when traveling at 65 miles per hour. That is roughly the length of two football fields. Under the same condition, a passenger car needs 316 feet to stop. Hence, truckers must give adequate space between vehicles and maintain the posted speed limit.
- Lack of Proper Training. A driver’s ability to adeptly operate a large truck plays an important role in the safety-ness the driver and anyone on the road. Hours of training and special licensures that contribute to gaining expertise are a must. Also, a truck driver must also fully understand and quickly realize potential roadway hazards. However, it is the trucking company’s responsibility to hire and train appropriately licensed and experienced drivers to represent their company. The fault in a truck accident may potentially fall on the company if the evidence demonstrates a lack of training or proper licensure.
Who to Ask for Help if You were Involved in a Truck Accident
We understand that a truck accident can jeopardize your health and general well-being. Darfoor Law Firm specializes in Personal Injury Claims including trucking accidents. It is our duty to help people have the best representation and fight for the compensation they are entitled to.
You may contact Darfoor Law Firm at +1-833-327-3667 for a free consultation and case evaluation.