During the past year, road travel has lightened as more workers are furloughed or transition to working from home. Despite the lower traffic numbers, traffic fatalities have increased by 16 percent during this time. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that drivers have been more likely to engage in risky behaviors despite fewer cars on the road. Speeding, lessened seatbelt use and intoxication have risen as drivers are emboldened by the lower police presence on the road and empty roadways.
Understanding the risks of sharing the road
Like semi-trailers, the two vehicles’ size discrepancy presents a substantial risk in collisions between passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles. The trucks involved in shipping have so much mass that breaking can take much longer to avoid a collision. Here are some reasons why drivers need to be cautious when maneuvering around trucks on the road:
- There were 4,136 truck crash fatalities in 2018.
- 67 percent of these fatalities were occupants of cars and other passenger vehicles.
- 15 percent of these deaths were bicyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians.
- In some areas of the country, traffic speeds rose 27 percent between March and April 2020.
Protecting yourself on the road
Despite all of the safety precautions that shipping companies take to make sure their drivers are operating in a safe manner, many drivers still engage in potentially reckless behaviors. Whether it’s lack of sleep, high speeds, roads with abrupt changes and obstacles, you need to maintain an active commitment to driving safely. If you received serious injuries in a collision with a truck, you need proper compensation to make up for the medical bills and wages lost.