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How Common is Truck Driver Fatigue?

The Dangers of Fatigued Truckers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that driver fatigue is one of the top reasons for large truck crashes in the U.S. According to the Large Truck Crash Causation Study published in 2007, 13% of commercial vehicle drivers were considered fatigued at the time of their crash. Here’s what you need to know.

What Causes Truck Driver Fatigue?

While the most apparent reason for truck driver fatigue would be not getting enough rest or sleep, several other factors can contribute to fatigue, including the following:

  • Illness: Being ill or slightly under the weather can make the body more tired than usual.
  • Medication: Some prescribed medications or over-the-counter drugs can have drowsiness effects. Truckers who take these medications should be aware of these side effects impacting their driving abilities.
  • Working long hours: Long hours and odd time shifts can cause someone’s circadian rhythm to be off-kilter. The circadian rhythm is the body’s internal clock, a 24-hour cycle that dictates when you feel tired and alert.

How Does Truck Driver Fatigue Impact Road Safety?

Driving while fatigued means driving while impaired. The following are some of the most common effects of driving while fatigued:

  • Decreased reflexes: Drowsiness and fatigue can cause a driver to be lethargic, and they may lack reflexes to brake quickly or move fast enough to avoid a dangerous situation.
  • Lack of attention: Driving means paying attention to road signs, speed limit postings, and surveying your surroundings for potential dangers. Missing these crucial signals can be the cause of a severe crash.
  • Impaired decision making: Sometimes, avoiding a serious accident means making quick decisions and swift maneuvers. When decision-making skills are impaired, a severe truck crash can result.

Getting Help After a Truck Accident

Truck accidents that are caused by fatigued drivers are preventable. Knowing that this type of crash could have been avoided makes the situation much more frustrating, especially when catastrophic injuries are the result. From traumatic brain injuries to spinal cord injuries, the long-term impact that truck crash victims face is devastating for both victims and their families.

If a negligent truck driver causes you or your loved one harm, we are here to protect you. From medical expenses to costs of treatments and therapies, we’ll help you seek the maximum compensation you deserve. Our team of experienced lawyers is here to protect your rights and support you when going through a difficult time.

Contact Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP at (800) 900-0863 or fill out this short form to request a free consultation with our team.