Driver Fatigue as a Cause for Truck Accidents

Have you ever been behind the wheel for three, four, maybe even five hours in a single day? The exhaustion you can begin to feel is heavy and it might be difficult to keep your eyes open and your reaction time gets sluggish. Not many of us would feel safe if we had to drive somewhere in these conditions, and yet this is part of the job description for commercial truckers.

The average shift for a truck driver is at least 14 hours with only 3 hours’ worth of breaks throughout the day. This means that they are steering a huge, heavy vehicle for 11+ hours a day. Truck driver fatigue is almost assuredly going to set in towards the end of their shift, and this puts everyone else on the road in serious danger.

What Does Exhaustion Behind the Wheel Do?

Getting tired while driving can affect you in many ways but the primary issue is that your reaction time can greatly increase. If someone hits the brakes in front of you, it may be impossible to stop your vehicle fast enough to prevent a rear-end collision. For a commercial truck that can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, the average stopping distance is already increased in comparison to smaller vehicles. Add fatigue into the equation and the result is devastation.

When a truck driver causes a truck accident due to their own fatigue, they cannot cite their long schedules as an excuse. They need to be able to maintain control of their semi-trucks at all times, regardless of how long they have been behind the wheel. If they start to feel drowsy, they have to pull over and rest, even if it means missing their deliveries and pickups. This is their responsibility as someone sharing the road with others.

If you have been hurt in a truck accident, you can come to Lenahan Law Firm and talk to our Dallas truck accident lawyers. Using our collective legal experience and unparalleled knowledge of litigation, we have been able to secure millions of dollars for our clients in past verdicts and settlements. Call 888.828.5630 to see what we can do for you.


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