Commercial Truck Crashes During the Holidays
The holiday season sees more vehicles on the road, between the influx of holiday travelers and commercial vehicles attempting to keep up with seasonal demand. Due to this added traffic, drivers must be aware of the dangers around them, as commercial trucks are at a higher risk for accidents during this time.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), during 2019, Thanksgiving weekend accounted for 454 truck driving-related deaths, and 799 occurred between Christmas and New Year's Day.
Why Do More Commercial Vehicle Accidents Happen During the Holidays?
While one may hope for some Christmas magic in delivering gifts, the more practical reality is that thousands of trucks frequent the roadways through the holiday season. The United States Postal Service (USPS) announced that while 2020 broke records in holiday deliveries, they're expecting this year to be just as busy — anticipating that they'll deliver 850 million to 950 million packages between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day.
With tighter deadlines, commercial vehicle drivers are pushed to the limit, thus increasing the risk of truck accidents. Some of the most common causes of accidents include:
Driver fatigue: truck drivers may have up to 14 consecutive hours of drive time, which may be extended during certain times of year to account for inclement weather.
Increased traffic: with the size of a truck’s blind spot, roadway congestion may make it more difficult to change lanes.
Lack of training: inexperienced truck drivers may be more likely to have weather-related crashes or drive recklessly to meet deadlines.
How Can You Stay Safe?
If you're driving this season, it's important to take extra precautions and drive defensively. Some safety tips to follow include:
Pass trucks carefully: When passing a commercial vehicle, always pass on the left side (as their most significant blind spot is on the right).
Increase the distance between your car and the truck: Truckloads can vary, but they can take longer to stop due to their size and the weight they're towing.
Watch for right turns: For a truck to make a right turn, they often swing wide and pass into the left line. Allow them room to complete this action.
Contact Daniel, Holoman & Associates LLP
If you or a loved one sustained an injury during a truck collision this holiday season, call (866) 380-2281 or fill out a form online to discuss your legal options and find out how an attorney can help you. The team at Daniel, Holoman & Associates LLP is driven to help you obtain the best outcome for your case.