For those of us accustomed to living in a major metropolitan area, the sound of sirens is a familiar part of the backdrop of everyday life. When we are on the road, sirens mean we need to pull over and clear the way for a police or emergency vehicle coming through. Unfortunately, car accidents are sometimes unavoidable consequences of this process.
A couple weeks ago, we discussed some common behaviors drivers engage in that are likely to cause distracted driving accidents. Of course, every Illinois driver knows that texting while driving is illegal and dangerous, but there are plenty of other driver distractions that can be just as likely to cause a crash.
Because of their sheer size and weight, truck accidents are often devastating regardless of the load the truck is carrying. But when a truck carrying volatile or hazardous materials is involved in a crash, the scene can quickly become a disaster.
Last week, we wrote about the controversial changes to the trucking industry's hours-of-service rules that are set to go into effect this summer. While many professional truck drivers oppose changes that mandate more rest breaks and put limits on consecutive driving hours, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recognizes that the HOS rules need to be changed in order to better prevent truck driver fatigue and related truck accidents.
In 2011, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration drafted changes to the rules governing when commercial truck drivers can drive and when they are required to take legally mandated rest breaks. These are commonly called the hours-of-service rules.
Earlier this week, we began a discussion about a truck driver who was recently sentenced to less than five years in prison for causing a crash that killed five people and injured nine others. Investigators believe that the 48-year-old truck driver had fallen asleep at the wheel; evidenced by the fact that he didn't even slow down before slamming his 18-wheeler into a line of stopped vehicles on the highway.
We have previously written that when a negligent driver takes the lives of other motorists on the road, criminal justice alone is often insufficient. Families who have lost their loved ones deserve more closure and more compensation from the at-fault driver than a criminal sentence can provide.
Trucking companies are the lifeblood of shipping in the contiguous United States. It ultimately doesn't matter where a particular company is located, because its drivers may travel across the entire country.
You wouldn't necessarily realize it if you regularly drive in Chicago traffic, but traffic fatality rates nationwide have been either decreasing or holding steady since about 2005. Unfortunately, the latest figures from 2012 show that we are now heading in the opposite direction and car accident fatality rates are again beginning to rise.
We regularly discuss critical safety issues that affect the American trucking industry and American motorists by extension. According to a newly released report out of Europe, many of the exact same safety concerns that our society struggles with each day plague other western nations as well.