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Truck Accidents Archives

Study illustrates the dangers of trucking accidents

Although many truck drivers in West Virginia work hard to operate their vehicles properly, the trucking industry overall appears to have a safety problem. Over the past decade, there has been a 20 percent increase in truck accidents. The Large Truck Crash Causation Study investigated the reasons behind these wrecks and determined that truck driver errors are the cause of many accidents.

Truck driver errors top cause of commercial truck accidents

Semi-trucks are a common sight on the highways of West Virginia, and their bulk makes them dangerous in crashes. Over the past decade, truck accidents have increased in frequency by 20 percent. The Large Truck Crash Causation Study produced by federal transportation agencies examined 120,000 fatal commercial truck accidents and concluded that drivers caused 68,000 of the wrecks.

Lawsuit challenges testing to detect drowsy truck drivers

West Virginia drivers may be concerned about the dangers that truck driver fatigue can pose on the road. Truck drivers who are drowsy behind the wheel could lose concentration or doze off while driving. While this is a dangerous action in any vehicle, it can be compounded by the significant size and mass of a large truck.

Trucking industry group wants to alter 14-hour clock rules

Truck driver fatigue is a serious road safety issue in West Virginia and around the country. However, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association claims that current federal regulations force truck drivers to stay on the road when they are tired, and it wants the rules changed.

The risks of not loading trucks properly

Overloading a truck can be dangerous for the driver and create excess wear on the vehicle. If a truck is too heavy, it could rollover, which may cause issues for occupants of other vehicles on West Virginia roads. It is also important to make sure that a load is properly distributed throughout the truck. If there is too much weight on a single axle, it could also increase the risk of an accident or increased damage.

Commuting to work could add to truck drivers' fatigue

Many people in West Virginia who earn their living as truck drivers sometimes put in many hours behind the wheel just to get to work. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is planning a survey that would explore the influence of long commutes that exceed 150 minutes on truck driver health and performance.

Driving safely near large trucks

Driving next to large trucks is relatively safe if truck drivers are trained and have experience. As long as everybody is paying attention, things should go smoothly. However, driving next to a truck does not always feel safe. The risks involved when driving next to a large truck usually stem from the truck itself, and being aware of the potential dangers can help West Virginia motorists drive safely and confidently next to a big rig.

Sleep apnea rule discarded

Motorists in West Virginia and other parts of the country might be waiting to find out whether truckers will ever be tested for sleep apnea. The Department of Transportation decided to discard the proposed requirement in June. This decision will affect truck drivers who might have been tested for the affliction due to factors that influence their health such as age, BMI, and blood pressure. Instead of waiting to find out who would pay for medical tests and certifications that would allow them to continue working, truckers will not have to be tested at this point.

More carriers may screen truckers for sleep apnea

The commercial trucking industry may be gearing up for increased sleep apnea screening following a U.S. Supreme Court decision in April to not hear an appeal concerning this matter. Brought by a driver, the lawsuit claimed that requiring truckers to undergo sleep apnea testing because they have a body mass index of 35 or higher violates their rights under the American with Disabilities Act. Now that carriers may have less fear of being sued, the safety of motorists who share West Virginia roadways with truck drivers could be impacted by new regulatory developments moving forward.

Advancing automation raises concerns at safety meeting

With the continued development of highly automated commercial driver-assistance systems, issues that could potentially impact West Virginia motorists are on the table. At the annual Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance workshop held on April 24, an industry official acknowledged that technological advancements could lead to enhanced road safety. However, she also implied that regulations are needed to ensure that the appropriate safety standards are in place.

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