Commercial trucks are some of the most imposing vehicles on the road. They are also some of the most highly-regulated vehicles. Many rules are different for commercial vehicles and their drivers than they are for passenger vehicles and people with standard driver’s licenses.
For example, the insurance requirements for 18-wheelers are much higher than the liability coverage necessary for passenger vehicles. Additionally, there are more rules restricting what drivers can do and more requirements for a commercial driver’s license than a basic driver’s license.
Unfortunately, companies in the transportation sector sometimes put a desire for maximum profit ahead of optimal public safety. There are several common practices in the trucking industry that may contribute to the likelihood of a preventable semi-truck crash, including the following.
Refusing to install the best underride guards
Underride collisions are some of the most tragic crashes on modern roads in part because they are largely preventable. Wider and stronger rear underride guards can make a big difference when compared with the basic models required by federal statute. Currently, trucking companies do not need to install side underride guards, and they may choose not to install them to save money on vehicle maintenance and fuel.
Putting too much pressure on drivers
Many trucking companies offer incentive pay or bonuses for drivers who consistently get their loads to clients on time. Others penalize commercial drivers for late deliveries even if they occur due to traffic disruptions or bad weather. The more pressure companies apply to their drivers, the more likely those professionals are to drive for longer than they should or faster than they should given traffic conditions.
Making bad employment choices
Investing in ongoing training is a major expense, and some Transportation companies may cut corners when it comes to keeping their drivers’ skills up-to-date. Additionally, they may fail to properly invest when recruiting new drivers. There is currently a shortage of commercial drivers which may lead to companies hiring those with problematic driving records or minimal experience on the road.
Unfortunately, people in passenger vehicles often pay the price for the practices of commercial transportation businesses. Filing a personal injury lawsuit is one way for people to hold a trucking company responsible for unsafe practices that eventually lead to someone getting hurt in traffic.