Distracted driving has been a big issue in recent years with all the technology we readily have at our fingertips. The National Transportation Safety Board has recommended that commercial truck drivers be banned from using both hand-held and hands-free cell phones while driving. Currently, truckers are banned from text messaging while driving, and can be hit with a $2,750 fine if caught.
Distracted driving and getting into an accident when you’re driving a regular car is bad enough, but imagine driving a huge tractor trailer and causing a car wreck because you were busy talking on the phone or looking down at your phone while texting. Trucks carrying heavy cargo can cause severe damage.
The recommendation of this ban on cell phone use stems from a case in Kentucky where 11 people were killed in a crash involving a tractor-trailer. Investigators concluded that the truck driver was using his phone at the time of the crash based on the phone log. There were no signs of mechanical issues with the truck or driver health problems.
Whether you’re a truck driver or not, it’s important to be mindful of the road at all times. If you absolutely must make or take that phone call, pull off to the side of the road in a safe area. For truckers who drive alone, we understand that it can get boring driving all day by yourself, but really think about how you are causing danger not only to yourself, but to others who share the road with you.
To find out about cell phone use and texting while driving laws in your state, visit the Governors Highway Safety Association.
If you’ve been involved in an accident with a truck driver, make sure to contact an experienced tractor-trailer accident attorney in Virginia.
Last Tuesday, August 4 there was a multi-vehicle car accident in Dayton, VA in Rockingham County that sent three people to the hospital.
The crash started when a tractor trailer driving northbound on Route 42 ran a red light and hit a green Chevrolet Suburban that was crossing the road. The truck then crossed the median and hit a green SUV traveling south. The SUV then hit another car.
The truck hit a third car and then crashed into a fence.
The driver of the suburban was thrown from his car and taken by helicopter to UVA Medical Center.
Four of the injured were taken to Rockingham Memorial Hospital.
Dayton Police Chief Donnie Conley said he’d never seen anything like it in the small town.
“It’s probably the worst I’ve seen in Dayton,” Conley said.
In addition to the Dayton Police Department and Bridgewater Rescue Squad, the Bridgewater Fire Department, Harrisonburg Rescue Squad, Clover Hill Rescue Squad, Rockingham County Fire and Rescue, Rockingham Sheriff’s Department and the Harrisonburg Police Department responded to the scene.
Trucks do a lot of damage to the nation’s highways and they are very dangerous to the cars around them. This is especially true now that President Bush relaxed the restrictions of trucking companies, making it possible for truck drivers to drive longer hours with less rest required between shifts.
Trains also can hold more cargo than a truck, are far more fuel efficient and are are a better investment for America’s future.
The article is long but well written and well worth reading.