Truck driver yawning while driving.

Why Driver Fatigue is a Common Cause of Truck Crashes

Understanding the Prevalence of Truck Driver Fatigue

Truckers have one of the most exhausting jobs, and driving while fatigued or drowsy is not uncommon. Truckers often face long driving hours to meet strict delivery deadline demands — and in some cases, they may also be required to physically unload cargo which can mean more exertion and compounding fatigue. The Large Truck Crash Causation Study published in 2007, reports that 13% of commercial motor vehicle drivers were considered fatigued at the time of their crash. Read on to learn the common causes of truck driver fatigue.

Why are Truck Drivers More Prone to Fatigue?

As mentioned above, meeting strict delivery schedules and long hauls are the top reasons why truck drivers are more prone to fatigue. However, here are some other common causes:

  • Feeling ill: Feeling under the weather or driving while ill can make someone more tired than usual.
  • Taking medication: Some over-the-counter or prescription drugs come with warnings of drowsiness. Truckers should read the labels before taking medications if they are doing a driving shift.
  • Working odd hours: Overnight shifts or other irregular hours can contribute to driver fatigue and tiredness.
  • Not getting enough sleep: When truckers fail to get the proper amount of sleep needed to be alert and ready for a long drive, it can mean an exhausted driver.

Not getting enough sleep or working odd hours can disrupt the circadian rhythm (internal clock). The circadian rhythm is responsible for a person’s physical, mental, and behavioral changes in a 24-hour cycle.

Who Are The Responsible Parties?

When it comes to liability in a truck crash involving driver fatigue, it may not be just the truck driver’s negligence that caused the crash. The trucking company that employed them may also be liable for the accident. Here are some examples of when a trucking company can be held responsible:

  • The trucking company encouraged the driver to violate the hours of service rules.
  • The trucking company demanded the driver meet unreasonable delivery deadlines.
  • The trucking company encouraged or ignored the falsification of logbooks.

Involved in a Truck Crash? Denver Trial Lawyers® Can Help

Truck accidents can be one of the most devastating and life-changing events for those who become injured. The FMCSA regulates the trucking industry. Drivers and trucking companies are mandated to follow the safety rules and regulations, but sadly, that doesn’t always happen.

If a negligent trucker injured you or a loved one, have the right to hold them accountable for their careless actions. Our team of truck accident lawyers is ready to fight for the compensation you deserve. Speak to anexperienced truck accident attorney at our firm today to learn your rights.

Contact Denver Trial Lawyers®today at (303) 647-9990 for a free consultation. There are no fees unless we win.