Trucking accidents are an unfortunate risk of the industry, and all too common. The stats show that it is a major problem. In 2017, 69 percent of accidents resulting in fatalities involved tractor-trailers. Deaths increased from truck accidents in 2018. Major contributing factors were:
- vehicle failure
- overcompensating while steering evasively
- driver fatigue and physical impairment
Looking at these significant contributing factors give us clear ideas about how to reduce trucking accidents.
While some accidents are freak incidents that cannot be prevented easily, other incidents can be prevented or reduced. When you are working with trucking clients, this information can be helpful.
Everyone wants safe roads, of course. For your clients in the trucking industry, reducing trucking accidents is vital to success. Here are some ways to protect individuals and businesses by reducing trucking accidents.
Avoid Driver Fatigue
Because the trucking industry has typically paid by the mile or the load, not by the hour, fatigued driving is a big problem. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration indicates required break times and maximum hours of driving allowable. Trucking companies and their drivers need to abide by the limits set out by the law and by company policy.
If an accident does occur and the driver is not covered by insurance, he/she and his/her employer can be held liable for any resulting damages, injuries, or death. No delivery is worth a life.
And drivers should stay away from controlled substances that purport to offer wakefulness or focus. The money earned or saved by pushing beyond safe limits is not worth the risk.
Teach Safety Skills — And Go Beyond
Trucking training helps reduce unsafe behaviors. Unless safety policies reinforce this training, it will not do much. It is beneficial to train drivers continually, instead of training new hires and calling it quits. Refresher courses promote safety, as does training that considers new regulations and seasonal changes.
Safety needs to be a commitment and corporate cultural cornerstone from the top down. If management does not care about safety, why should anyone else?
Always Inspect and Maintain
Regulators set strict rules for the maintenance and operation of commercial vehicles. Unless drivers are regularly inspecting and maintaining their fleet and operating under the right circumstances, mechanical failure is sure to be a problem. Something as simple as distributing a load improperly can have tragic consequences. And brake defects are a common cause for trucks to be taken out of service. Failing to complete inspections, maintenance, and the associated documentation means liability could transfer to the driver following an accident.
The Hazards of Truck Accidents
Understanding how to reduce trucking accidents is important because the fall-out of an incident involving a truck is likely to be more complex than with a personal vehicle accident.
Injuries and property damage are often worse with a truck, given the size and weight of a tractor-trailer. Various parties are involved, from the other vehicle(s) to the trucking carrier to the driver, and even the owners of the cargo, manufacturers of truck parts, and more. All of these parties may have some liability or some role to play. A lawsuit as a result of a truck accident can be complex. When these accidents occur, settlements are often larger, in line with these complexities.
Invest in Commercial Auto Insurance
Our commercial auto insurance coverage takes your clients’ commitment to reducing trucking accidents one step further. While our risk management experts work with your client to mitigate every hazard we can, our insurance protects drivers and carriers.
We know that trucking is a risky industry. And we understand that many of your clients may have been turned down by insurance companies in the past. No matter your clients’ claim history, previous rejections, or other issues, if there is a way to provide commercial auto insurance coverage, our expert team at Prime Insurance Company will make it happen.
We believe that taking measures to minimize accidents is critical for truck drivers and their parent companies. At the same time, we think that commercial auto insurance is vital to protect assets and reputation if an accident happens despite your clients’ best efforts.
We’re here to offer whatever insurance lines you need for optimal protection. If you’d like more information, call us at 800-257-5590 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Instagram, and read our blog to learn more about us and what we do.