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Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Truth about Accidents Involving Semi Trucks




We have all heard the commercials on TV for lawyers who claim they can get you thousands of dollars if you are involved in an accident with a semi truck. There are also plenty of news stories in the media highlighting crashes involving these large pieces of equipment. Yet statistics show the majority of accidents that involve a big truck are due to the negligence of other drivers, not those who are responsible for keeping eighteen wheels on the road.





The sheer size of a semi truck often means that any accident it is involved in with other vehicles is going to be more severe than when two or more regular sized vehicles have a similar accident. Even as low speeds and accident involving a semi truck can be very serious. To help reduce the risks of semi trucks being involved in accidents, employers are working hard to offer effective training programs for their employees.





Many employers who have a fleet of trucks mandate each employee attends a safety meeting on a regular basis. This may be monthly, quarterly, or twice a year. During these meetings all of the safety violations that have taken place in that period of time should be reviewed and evaluated. This way others can learn from mistakes that have already been made and prevent similar accidents from occurring in the future.





The cost of insurance for semi trucks is very high, and companies as well as owner operators do all they can to reduce it. Having a clean driving record is important for this to happen. Many trucking companies refuse to hire individuals with a history of accidents or speeding tickets. They are considered a high risk because the potential is there that they will be involved in an accident.





Incentives for employees that drive a set amount of miles without any types of accidents is a good way to reward them for their attention to safety. This can be a flat fee for a set period of time or it can be an amount based on the number of miles the driver has covered during that span of time.





The percentage of accidents taking place involving semi trucks compared to regular passenger vehicles is very low. Yet the drivers of these large trucks are often assumed to be at fault in the eyes of society. While there are instances where the driver was tired or under the influence of something, this isn’t generally the case. Sometimes accidents do happen due to the weather involving large trucks, but the myth that truck drivers are careless individuals who speed excessively hold no truth.





It is a good idea for all truck drivers to carry a disposable camera in their glove compartment. This way pictures can be taken if an accident does occur before the vehicles are moved off the road. Make sure you take the time to write down the date, the time, road conditions, and get the names of any witnesses to the event. If you work for a company you need to report the accident to your dispatcher immediately.





Having this information can make all the difference when it comes to figuring out who was at fault for the accident. Too many people are in a hurry to sue truck drivers and their companies when such incidents occur. If you have to hire an attorney or you have to go to court over the incident you want to have detailed information to protect your innocence.