Collin County, TX- With our economy on the mend, the trucking industry has been seeing a major boom in transportation. That’s a great thing, but along with all that commercial traffic there has been an increase in fatal and injurious accidents so advocates are eyeing technologies that can improve trucking safety.
In 2012, 3,802 people lost their lives in commercial truck accidents which represents an 18 percent increase over NHTSA statistics from 2009. Accidents involving injuries are also on the rise, there were 77,000 injurious truck accidents in 2012, up 45 percent from 2009 when there were 53,000 injuries resulting
A large proportion of those accidents can be attributed to careless motorists, but truck drivers are also responsible for a large number of the crashes. Because they are professional drivers, truckers are often better drivers, but the pressure to get their loads to their destination in time and long hours spent on the road can create a dangerous situation.
A high-profile accident over this summer involving comedian Tracy Morgan brought to the forefront the issue of fatigued driving in the trucking industry. Changes to hours-of –service rules for truckers was intended to curb fatigued truck accidents, but drivers and trucking companies often defy those rules. So safety advocates are looking for alternative solutions.
One such solution is a type of camera that can detect when a truck driver is feeling tired, according to Bloomberg. The camera detects when a driver’s eyelids begin to droop and sounds off an alarm to jar the driver awake. This just one of the emergent technologies aimed at curtailing fatigued driving.
Another technology that could help prevent deadly truck accidents are collision avoidance systems, which are quickly becoming standard for passenger vehicles, but is lagging in the trucking industry. Other technologies would automatically apply the brakes of a commercial truck if hazards are detected.
The NHTSA has yet to require trucking companies utilize some of these technologies and when safety measures are proposed, the rulemaking process can delay implementation of basic protocols for years.
Some in the trucking industry are reluctant to voluntarily utilize safety technology because of the cost, and sometimes deflect responsibility onto other drivers.
When a person is fatigued and they fall asleep at the wheel can easily lose control of their vehicle, and because they are typically traveling at highway speeds, it takes just a moment to cause a catastrophic accident. Should an accident result from fatigued driving, the truck driver and possibly the trucking company may have to take responsibility for the injuries or deaths that result. With the representation of a Texas truck accident attorney, victims can pursue the parties at fault for their accident and recover all the accident-related costs they have incurred.
If your have been harmed by a negligent driver, you should contact a Texas truck accident attorney to discuss how you can recoup your medical expenses and receive damages for your pain and suffering.