The Dangers of Drowsy Truck Drivers

Driving a commercial truck demands intense focus and attention. Yet, even with regulations limiting driving hours and mandating rest periods, many truck drivers still experience fatigue on the road. Drowsy driving poses a significant risk, especially when it involves large trucks.

What Are the Signs of Drowsy Driving?

Common signs of drowsy driving include:

  • Frequent blinking
  • Yawning or rubbing eyes
  • Drifting in and out of lanes
  • Difficulty maintaining a consistent speed
  • Not proceeding when red lights turn green
  • Missing road signs or exits

If you observe a truck driver displaying any of these signs, exercise caution and give them plenty of space. Attempting to pass or maneuver around a drowsy driver can heighten the risk of a collision.

What Are the Risks Associated With Drowsy Driving?

The risks associated with drowsy driving are significant, particularly in the context of commercial trucks. Due to their size and weight, these oversized vehicles require longer stopping distances and have a greater potential for causing severe damage in truck accidents.

When truck drivers are fatigued, their reaction times are slowed, and their ability to make quick decisions is compromised. This can lead to devastating accidents, including rear-end collisions, jackknife accidents, rollovers, and run-off-road accidents.

Furthermore, truck drivers often have limited views in their rearview mirrors due to the size and height of their vehicles, along with trailer obstructions. That poses dangers for other vehicles, as smaller cars and motorcycles can easily fall into blind spots. They could be virtually invisible to a truck driver.

Without clear visibility of surrounding traffic, truck drivers may unintentionally change lanes or make maneuvers that put other vehicles at risk of accidents or collisions. When they’re drowsy, the likelihood of this happening could increase.

How Can Drowsy Driving Truck Accidents Be Prevented?

Preventing drowsy driving accidents necessitates a comprehensive approach involving trucking companies, drivers, and regulatory agencies. Strategies include:

  • Implementing strict hours-of-service regulations.
  • Encouraging drivers to prioritize their health and well-being.
  • Providing education and training on recognizing signs of fatigue.
  • Installing technology like fatigue monitoring systems and lane departure warnings.
  • Enforcing consequences for violations.

These proactive measures can significantly reduce the number of accidents involving large trucks. They could also prevent unnecessary injuries and loss of life on our roads.

Who Can Be Held Liable for a Drowsy Driving Truck Accident?

Determining liability in a driving truck accident can be complicated because several parties might be involved. The truck driver may be held accountable for operating the vehicle while fatigued. The trucking company could also bear liability if they failed to enforce proper rest periods or pressured drivers to exceed legal driving limits.

The truck manufacturer or maintenance provider might share responsibility if a mechanical issue contributed to the accident. Finally, in cases where poor road conditions played a role, government entities responsible for road maintenance could be held liable. Identifying all responsible parties is critical for pursuing compensation for victims of such accidents.

Reach Out to an Experienced Baltimore Truck Accident Lawyer at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton for a Free Consultation

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a drowsy truck driver, seek legal representation from an experienced Baltimore truck accident lawyer at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. Call 800-547-4LAW (4529) or submit our online form for a free consultation.

We have offices in Baltimore, Glen Burnie, Lanham, and Owings Mills, allowing us to represent clients in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.