Any driver can make dangerous mistakes at the wheel, but some drivers make mistakes that have more consequences for others. People with commercial driver’s licenses have to attend additional courses beyond traditional driver’s training. There are more rules that limit what they can do at the wheel. They are even subject to stricter speed limits on certain roads.
The goal of these restrictions and requirements is to protect the public from the catastrophic crashes that commercial vehicles can cause. Unfortunately, truckers do still frequently caused wrecks with smaller vehicles, and often those crashes are the result of something the trucker did.
What are the most common mistakes made by commercial drivers that result in collisions?
They make the wrong choice based on traffic conditions
Drivers have to constantly judge their environment and make educated decisions about what to do next. With more education and plenty of professional driving experience, you might expect that the average trucker would be unlikely to make a mistake at the wheel.
However, statistically, making the wrong decision about how to drive is the number one truck driver mistake that causes crashes. Making the wrong decision is the reason a trucker causes a crash 38% of the time.
They give in to the temptation of distraction
Driving all day is a monotonous job, especially if someone follows the same route all the time or primarily drives on the interstate. Drivers may try to engage themselves mentally to combat the boredom they experience on the job.
Sadly, distraction at the wheel is a big issue for commercial drivers because it takes longer for them to maneuver their vehicles or stop them in an emergency. Distraction leads to recognition errors, meaning the driver doesn’t notice something and respond to it in time. Recognition errors and distraction cause another 28% of commercial vehicle collisions.
They aren’t conscious and able to drive
Non-performance is the final entry in this list of the leading trucker contributions to commercial crashes. Either because they fall asleep at the wheel or they experience a debilitating medical event, they are not conscious and able to respond to changing traffic conditions. Non-performance is the issue at fault for 12% of commercial truck crashes in the United States.
Recognizing how truckers contribute to commercial crashes can motivate you to seek justice after a wreck.