According to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Ohio consistently ranks among the ten states with the highest rate of fatal large truck and bus crashes. Looking at the factors that contribute to these crashes can help drivers avoid catastrophic injury in a truck accident.
Review these common causes behind serious bus and truck collisions to stay safe on the road.
The numbers from the FMCSA report indicate that in 39% of fatal truck accidents, the person who died was not wearing his or her seatbelt. Whether you are the driver or a passenger, always buckle up for rides long and short.
Excessive speeds contributed to 17% of fatal truck crashes in the FMCSA data. A 2012 study by the American Transportation Research Institute found that limiting truck driver speeds significantly reduced the rate of serious accidents. Pay attention to the speed limits when traveling on Ohio roads. Adjust your speed to leave plenty of space when passing, following or traveling in front of a large bus or truck.
Truck driver fatigue
With long hours and limited breaks, truck drivers often become exhausted behind the wheel. Drowsy driving causes almost as many accidents as drunk driving, including a disproportionate number of serious truck accidents.
Truck drivers who operate under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious safety problem in the transportation industry. Ohio mandates DUI charges for commercial drivers arrested with blood alcohol content of 0.04% or higher, compared to a legal limit of 0.08% for non-CDL drivers. Unlike other drivers, commercial drivers cannot qualify for a limited work license during their one-year DUI suspension period.
If you or a loved one suffers serious injuries in a truck accident, you can seek legal damages for medical bills and other costs if the truck driver was responsible for the crash. In Ohio, you have two years to file a lawsuit for this type of accident.