If you’ve been injured, or if you have lost a loved one, then you know all too well that a jackknifed tractor trailer presents risks not only for the driver but for those traveling near the truck. When a truck jackknifes the trailer typically swings out and rests at a 90 degree angle from the cab. Not only can the swinging tractor hit other vehicles but the vehicles traveling behind the truck may have to stop suddenly and may be involved in secondary accidents.
Many Pennsylvania jackknife truck accidents occur because of driver error. If a truck driver brakes too quickly, speeds, or takes a turn too fast then a jackknife accident may occur. An experienced Pennsylvania truck accident lawyer can investigate what happened in your accident and may help you get the recovery that you deserve.
Late last month the federal government released the results of a new study that found that many workers in the United States are getting fewer than six hours of sleep at night and, as a result, are putting themselves and others at risk of serious accidents.
One of the key findings of the study is that people with rotating schedules or overnight shifts may be among the most tired workers. This may include truck drivers. The study encourages both workers and employers to consider how to change work schedules or make other accommodations that ensure that workers get enough sleep.
Are you a truck driver? Do your shifts constantly change or routinely involve nighttime hours? How do you stay rested to prevent serious truck accidents? Please leave a comment. Your tips may help prevent another trucker from causing a serious accident or fatality.
You know something wasn’t right at the time of your crash. You were following all of the traffic laws and you were alert to potential dangers. Then, all of the sudden, you were injured in a wreck and you are left hurt and wondering about the potential cause of your crash.
While it the cause of the accident not be evident at the scene of the crash, it is important for your Pennsylvania truck accident lawyer to investigate whether:
- There was a mechanical problem with the truck.
- The trucker suffered a medical emergency that should’ve been caught in a pre-employment physical.
- The trucker, perhaps because of the trucking company, did not comply with hours of service regulations or other safe driving regulations.
You, understandably, are interested in finding out why you are hurt. However, finding out the true cause of a truck crash may be important for more than satisfying your curiosity. It may determine who the proper defendants are and who is responsible for compensating you for your injuries.
There are few professions where adequate sleep is as important as it is for truckers. Federal regulations attempt to make sure that truckers are well rested so that accidents caused by tired drivers can be avoided. To that end, hours of service regulations have been in place for a long time (and were recently revised) to try to ensure that truckers have adequate rest periods.
For at least the last decade, other potential causes of tired truckers have been considered by the federal government. Sleep apnea is one of the potential causes of tired truckers. Hours of service regulations will not prevent fatigue from sleep apnea and any kind of fatigue, regardless of its cause, can be dangerous for truckers and other motorists.
Thus, it is expected that in the next few months the federal government is going to propose regulations that will require sleep apnea screening for truckers who meet certain criteria. Those criteria are expected to include a BMI (body mass index) of 35 or greater. Those who support sleep apnea screening for truckers generally welcome the expected change while those who do not support the screening believe that the screening will disqualify many truckers from holding a commercial driver’s license.
What do you think? Would such a regulation improve safety and prevent fatalities caused by fatigue or is it unnecessary? Please leave a comment and share your thoughts.
Truckers have a lot to negotiate on the streets of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Often truckers must face the significant, yet different perils, of making deliveries on crowded city streets, of traveling local suburban roads where children play, of stop and go traffic on urban highways and of long monotonous stretches of rural interstate.
One of the dangers facing truckers on local roads is what happens when they come to highway rail grade crossings. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, approximately 700 of the 3,000 highway rail grade crossing accidents that occur each year involve a truck or tractor trailer. These accidents may result in significant injuries or fatalities. Truckers are urged to approach railroad crossings with care, to decrease their speed, to be prepared to stop, and to use extreme caution.
Have you ever been involved in a railroad truck wreck? What happened? Please leave a comment and let us know.
The winter weather may be over, but that is not the end of weather related risks for truck drivers and other motorists. The spring and summer months can bring rain which creates its own dangers for truckers and those traveling near large tractor trailers.
Wet roads can, for example:
- Make it more difficult for a truck to stop. It may take longer for a truck to stop on wet roads which may result in more accidents if truckers do not properly account for the weather and road conditions.
- Water spray from the trucks can create blinding situations for nearby motorists.
- Trucks, like cars, can hydroplane and lose control.
It is important to be aware of these risks and to take steps to avoid a serious Pennsylvania truck accident, even as the weather warms and the threat of ice and snow goes away – until next year.
In March 2011 the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) requested that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) strengthen regulations related to tractor trailer underride guards. The IIHS found that underride guards, designed to stop passenger cars from going under trucks, were failing even in low speed accidents and that stronger underride guards could prevent truck accident injuries and fatalities.
Currently, it is unclear whether the NHTSA is going to act on the IIHS petition for change. To date, new regulations have not been put in place that would require stronger underride guards to prevent serious accidents. Yet, the federal government estimates that more than 400 people are killed and more than 5,000 people are injured each year when their passenger vehicle collides with the back of a tractor trailer.
Do you think stronger underride regulations should be put in place for tractor trailers? Please leave a comment and let us know.
The problem of tired truckers is not new. For years, the U.S. Department of Transportation has had hours of service rules in place to prevent tired truckers from causing accidents. Public awareness campaigns have been launched and trucking companies have been urged to allow truckers adequate time to rest so that serious injuries and fatalities can be avoided.
However, not everyone may have gotten the message. A new survey found that 10% of truckers and other transportation providers such as pilots and train conductors may be significantly sleep deprived and create dangerous conditions. The poll, conducted by the National Sleep Foundation, found that more transportation workers perform their jobs while drowsy than other types of workers.
It is the hope of researchers that the information learned will remind those in the trucking industry, and broader transportation industry, that tired truckers and transportation providers are dangerous and that additional steps need to be taken to ensure that drivers have adequate rest and can perform their jobs safely.
Two tractor trailers and a pickup truck with a horse trailer were involved in serious New Jersey Turnpike accident on the morning of Monday February 27, 2012. The crash occurred on the southbound side of the Turnpike in Hamilton Township.
According to reports of this New Jersey truck crash, a tractor trailer rear ended the horse trailer and forced the pickup and horse trailer into the tractor trailer in front of it. It took emergency personnel about two hours to free the driver of the pickup who was then airlifted to the hospital for treatment. A veterinarian was on site to treat the horses.
Trucks carrying livestock create additional problems that are not present when other types of trucks are involved in crashes. Special attention must be paid to any injured animals and any animals who become loose on the roadway after a crash. Often, experts such as veterinarians or farmers need to be brought in to care for or collect the injured animals as first responders are busy dealing with human injuries, property damage, accident investigation and accident clean up.
It is important to leave extra space between your car and any truck carrying livestock to prevent this type of truck accident.
An ambulance was dispatched to a Wawa store in Upper Macungie Township around 11:30 p.m. on Monday February 13, 2012. A 42 year old woman reportedly had an eye injury resulting from a truck accident. She was allegedly hit in the eye, or just above the eye, by a piece of the truck’s trailer.
The exact details of the accident have not yet been released. However, an emergency worker reported that it appeared the woman had been hit by the handle on the big rig’s trailer landing pads.
We wish the victim of this Pennsylvania truck accident a fast and complete recovery from her eye injuries.