The state of Florida has a large population of trucks plying its roads and highways. Expectedly, truck accidents and accidents caused by truck malfunction are also on the rise. Florida does not have the highest number of truck-related accidents in the United States, but it has a high level of truck accidents. Sadly, Florida ranks the third highest state for truck accidents in the United States.
Ships are popular in Tampa because ships load and offload cargo to the shore. Containerized cargo loading and unloading is a typical scene in Tampa Bay. These Offloaded cargoes are then loaded in trucks and transported to their destination.
Precautionary Measures in Preventing Truck Accidents within Tampa Bay
Truck accidents can cause senseless loss of lives and properties. Although accidents cannot be alienated, they can be reduced through proactive and precautionary measures. Trucks are big vehicles. A particular skill is required to drive and maneuver them. Truck drivers should master driving techniques like how to reverse and turn at a bend. Pedestrians, motorists, and other road users should not attempt to race with a truck on the highway or underestimate the power and size of such giant machines. Truck-related accidents can be prevented in several ways.
1. Regular maintenance and checks will be carried out: There should be regular truck maintenance. Certain parts of the truck will be checked regularly, such as the following;
- Signal Lights (e.g. headlights)
- Air dam
2. Adherence to Florida Hours-of-Service Laws: Florida has stipulated hours of service. Non-adherence with Florida hours of service is a significant cause of fatigue amongst truck drivers, leading to accidents. Truck drivers operating in Florida will comply with the following hours of service-
- A driver may drive 12 hours after ten consecutive hours off duty.
- A driver may not drive after the 16th hour after coming on duty following ten consecutive hours off duty.
- A driver may not drive after 70/80 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. Thirty-four consecutive hours off constitutes the end of the 7/8 days.
3. Hazardous Materials: Drivers who will be loading and transporting
A driver should obtain a permit before transporting hazardous materials. Asides from a hazardous material permit, drivers will also carry papers that contain the type and description of the goods they are transporting. It should also be noticeably visible on a truck, a notice in writing, informing everyone that the truck before them is carrying and is transporting a dangerous substance.
4. Adhering to DUI laws: Truck drivers must obey DUI laws. Strict Obedience
These laws by truck drivers cannot be overemphasized. The municipality must enforce compliance with DUI laws. DUI laws stipulate that truck drivers should not work if they have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.04 or higher or are found under the influence of any controlled substance.
DUI laws also provide that truck drivers are not to consume alcohol within four hours of starting a duty shift. Neither should he consume after an accident until a post-accident-BAC test is conducted
Causes of truck accidents
1. Fatigue driving
Overworking and lack of sleep are some of the causes of fatigue. A driver should not get behind the wheel in a state of exhaustion. Get enough sleep, and rest after strenuous work hours. A crash caused by fatigue driving can lead to damages awarded against the Taxi Driver.
2. Inability to maneuver
Maneuvering trucks takes great skill because of its weight. A driver can lose control of this heavy vehicle if not properly driven. Loss of control is a significant cause of truck accidents anywhere in the world, the United States inclusive.
3. Brake failure
Except where the vehicle has previously shown signs of brake failure, and the driver did nothing to remedy it, brake failures are usually not the driver’s fault. Brake failure is beyond what the truck driver can control, and any loss arising from a brake failure can be attributed to the manufacturer’s negligence.
4. Bad, Narrow, or Difficult Road Network
Bad or narrow roads are a disadvantage to truck drivers. Maneuvering a truck is enough hard work. A bad road or improperly maintained road system only makes it more difficult. While constructing roads, the state, municipality, or any agency of government responsible for road construction and maintenance should consider heavy-duty vehicles like trucks when constructing road networks. A bad or tricky road is a common cause of truck accidents. For example, in an attempt to climb a hilly area, a truck may roll backward, hit a stump, and roll over, which may cause a dangerous accident.
Trucks typically transport goods. so they weigh more and have more space. The temptation is for truck owners and drivers to overload the truck with more than it can bear. Overloading will cause a truck to lose its balance, and the loaded goods tend to shift or fall off. All of these can cause a dangerous accident.
6. Driving Under Influence
Truck drivers are not allowed to drink while on duty. They are also prohibited from drinking alcohol within four hours of driving a commercial company vehicle. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) mandates that the blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) threshold is .04% for commercially licensed drivers.
7. Bad Weather
Heavy snow, rainfall, and other severe weather conditions can blur the driver’s vision, cause him to miscalculate, or cause the truck to malfunction. Bad weather contributes to truck accident crashes.
Other causes of truck accidents are; Aggressive driving, poor truck maintenance culture, speeding, and inexperienced driving.
What if a Truck Accident Occurs?
As said, accidents cannot be alienated. They can be prevented to a large degree, reduced to the barest minimum, and precautionary measures can be implemented to curb them. Nevertheless, to say that exercising precautionary measures will alienate truck accidents is only building castles in the air. So what should you do if you or someone you love suffers in a truck accident?
We believe it is commonsensical to get medical attention. But do you know it is also important to get legal help? Here is why you should contact a truck accident attorney in Tampa.
Why you should contact a Truck Accident Attorney in Tampa
Contacting a truck accident lawyer is a step you should take after a truck accident. There are many reasons you should contact a truck accident attorney to help fight and win your case. Usually, truck companies have their team of attorneys, and you should also have your attorney. A truck accident lawyer can guide you. They will provide you with the support and knowledge of the law concerning your matter. A truck accident attorney can help you recover your medical bills and other financial compensation that you are deserving of. Your attorney will gather the facts necessary to establish a case on your behalf and provide you with adequate representation that you will need at every step.
Contact Coleman Law Group for a Truck Accident Attorney in Tampa Bay.
2901 1st Ave. N. Suite 303 St. Petersburg, FL 33713