Most of our posts focus on obtaining fair compensation for serious car crash injuries. But in this one, we would like to shift gears a bit (no pun intended). After all, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Being mindful of a few tips significantly reduces the risk that you will be involved in a trucking accident. Additionally, being a good driver fulfills your duty of care and helps you do your part to make our roads safer.
In a perfect world, if drivers follow these tips, there would be no more trucking accidents in Illinois. Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world. No matter how hard you try to avoid a wreck, you have no control over the other driver’s actions or reactions. So, it is nice to know that a Rockford trucking accident lawyer has your back in these situations. If you are the victim of a trucking accident, we fight for the compensation you need and deserve.
Maintain a Generous Following Distance
The two-second rule and the license plate rule are good guidelines for following passenger cars and trucks. When the vehicle in front of you passes a fixed point, like a road sign, count two seconds. If you pass the marker before you get to two, you are too close. The same thing applies if you can read the license plate number of the car in front of you.
These rules may not be as effective if you are following an 18-wheeler. The long trailer limits driver visibility. Additionally, it is a lot harder to stop an 80,000-pound truck than it is to stop a 3,000-pound car. So, hang back far enough so you can see the driver’s side mirror.
This point highlights the difference between the noncommercial and commercial driver’s duty of care. As mentioned, noncommercial drivers usually have a duty to maintain a two-second following distance. Since large trucks are so much harder to stop, the recommended following distance is seven seconds under ideal conditions. The following distance lengthens as weather and other conditions deteriorate.
Assume the Trucker is Impaired
Maintaining a proper following distance is the best way to avoid trucking accidents. However, we are not finished with this list yet.
Fatigue and drug use are very common among truckers. Since 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has repeatedly rolled back some key HOS (Hours of Service) rules. Therefore, more truckers are on the road longer than ever. On a related note, most truckers admit they use amphetamines to stay awake. These drugs impair judgment ability. Moreover, when these drugs wear off, the user crashes hard and fast.
Driving while drowsy and while under the influence of amphetamines may or may not be illegal. But such behavior always violates a trucker’s duty of care. Therefore, a Rockford trucking accident lawyer can obtain substantial compensation in these cases.
Unless they are picking up or dropping off loads, large trucks almost never use surface streets. Freeways may be a more convenient way to get from place to place. But they are also a more dangerous way, at least in terms of trucking accident possibility.
Overall, surface streets are safer than freeways, because speed is not as much of a factor. Velocity not only multiplies the risk of a crash. Speed also multiplies the force in a collision.
Rely on a Diligent Winnebago County Trucking Accident Attorney
Accident victims are usually entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced trucking accident lawyer in Rockford, contact Fisk & Monteleone, Ltd. by calling 815-315-0574. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.