It’s no surprise that large trucks account for more than their share of crashes and highway deaths, and research shows that truck driver fatigue is often the cause. Truck drivers on Texas roads can put in 12 cumulative hours behind the wheel and still be operating within state hours-of-service regulations. That’s a long time – and a lot of fatigued drivers.
Add an on-board computer or texting device to the mix – and you have a recipe for disaster.
The Department of Transportation is kicking off a Distracted Driving Summit today to discuss the effects of texting while driving and other distractions behind the wheel. According to The New York Times, however, the trucking industry has already weighed in on the subject, saying the trucking industry should be exempted.
This despite a study from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, which found that truck drivers who used on-board dispatch computers faced a 10 times greater risk of crashing, nearly crashing or wandering from their lane more than truckers who did not use the devices. The risk was 23 times greater for those who texted while driving.
Slack & Davis truck accident attorneys have witnessed the tragic results of truck driver fatigue and distractions behind the wheel. We urge state and federal regulators and elected officials to pursue legislation and guidelines that promote safety over convenience. — Mike Davis