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Houston truck crash attorneyDriving a commercial truck is not easy. Truck drivers must constantly remain alert to ensure that they are in control of these large, heavy vehicles, and they need to be able to respond quickly and effectively to conditions on the road. Unfortunately, there are a variety of issues that can affect a truck driver’s ability to drive safely, and driver fatigue is one of the most common, and most dangerous, of these concerns. When truck drivers are fatigued or drowsy, the likelihood of truck accidents increases significantly, and these collisions can cause serious harm to people in other vehicles.

Common Reasons for Truck Driver Fatigue

Spending long hours on the road is something that every truck driver needs to be ready for. Unfortunately, remaining awake and alert during a lengthy trip is not always easy. To address this issue, truck drivers are required to take regular breaks, and the number of hours they can drive is limited. “Hours of service” regulations require drivers to maintain logs of their driving time, and they can only drive a certain number of hours each day and within a week. 

In some cases, truck drivers may violate regulations and exceed their allowed hours of service, or they may falsify driving logs in order to spend more time on the road and deliver cargo more quickly. However, even when drivers follow all regulations, they may still become drowsy or fatigued due to issues such as:

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Houston truck crash lawyerTragically, many car accidents involving large commercial trucks are deadly. Even more tragically, many fatal truck accidents are preventable. If you have lost a spouse, parent, child, or another close family member in a truck crash, you know first-hand just how devastating these accidents can be. You may be interested in exploring your legal options but are unsure of whether taking legal action is the right step. Read on to learn about the potential benefits of filing a wrongful death claim after losing a loved one in a truck crash in Texas.

Seeking Justice for a Loved One Killed by Negligence

The word “negligence” is a legal term used to describe irresponsible or reckless behavior that causes injury to someone. Many truck accidents are caused by the negligent actions of one or more parties. Fatal truck crashes may be caused by negligence in the form of:

  • Intoxicated driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Inadequate truck maintenance
  • Trucking company shortcuts or oversights
  • Negligent design or manufacture of truck parts
  • Improper loading and securement of truck cargo
  • Negligent road design or maintenance

If another party’s careless or unlawful actions led to your loved one’s death. A wrongful death claim may be the best way to hold that party accountable for your family’s tragic loss.

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While all motor vehicle accidents can cause life-changing injuries and damage, truck accidents are some of the most severe. These types of crashes can:

  • Cause more serious injuries
  • Cause more damage to your personal property
  • Involve different laws and regulations

Truck accidents often result in serious or catastrophic injuries. Why?

  • Large trucks need longer to stop. If the driver isn’t paying attention or someone cuts them off, they may not be able to stop in time to prevent a crash
  • Large trucks need more room to navigate, so they’re more likely to tip while making turns that are too tight
  • Trucks are much heavier than passenger vehicles. The force of the crash is likely to be higher because of that fact alone

As a driver of a typical consumer vehicle, your goal should be to play it safe around these larger trucks. While there is no way to guarantee that you’ll avoid a crash with a large truck, you can take steps to prevent them as a result of your actions.

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The iPhone hadn’t been invented yet. Neither had Google Maps or Facebook. The last time the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) conducted a study of the causes of large truck crashes was from 2001-2003, when were significantly fewer high-tech distractions tempting truckers to shift their attention from the roads and traffic.

The agency recently announced that it’s launching a new study; research that will certainly examine the impact of distracted driving, as well as improvements in vehicle safety, roadway design, changes in driver behavior and other trends that have emerged over the past two decades.

The earlier study included a review of 120,000 crashes involving commercial trucks. The FMCSA notes that after that research project was completed in 2003, fatal truck wrecks decreased for six years, hitting a low of 2,893 in 2009. Since then, however, fatal crashes involving big rigs have risen – all the way up to 4,415 just two years ago.

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