When you get on the road, you must be watchful of those around you. Even though you are only in control of your vehicle, you never know how tired the drivers around you might be. However, you could benefit from the experience of professional drivers.
Have you noticed fewer commercial vehicles on the road? What about increases in shipping costs? Are you having to wait longer for food and goods to get from point A to point B?
Commercial vehicles don’t need to be moving to pose a threat to others. For instance, a disabled truck can lead to catastrophic crashes when it blocks traffic or causes secondary accidents when other drivers react to a stopped truck.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has some crash data out for 2016 that should be of interest to truck drivers in New Mexico. In that year, the latest for which there are statistics, the number of serious accidents among dump trucks and ready-mix concrete delivery trucks rose by 9 percent and 9.6 percent, respectively. (By a "serious" crash is meant one where the truck had to be towed away.)
Every time we get in our cars or trucks, there is some risk of getting into an accident. However, there are certain behaviors and time periods that can increase this risk.
Fatigue is a major concern in the trucking industry. Between high demand for goods to be delivered by truck and the troubling shortage of truckers, drivers are putting in a lot of hours on the road. And despite regulations in place to curb excessive driving, the fact is that many truckers are putting their lives and the lives of other motorists in danger by being on the road too long.
Commercial vehicles that transport goods and people are held to a high standard with regard to inspections and safety equipment; the drivers of these vehicles are held to a higher standard as well. And while people might think that these standards only apply to truckers and the tractor-trailers that drive across the country, the fact is that they apply to all commercial vehicles and drivers, including those that transport people.
Finding a parking spot does not seem like a concerning issue for most drivers. Beyond being an annoyance or minor inconvenience, parking typically does not leave an impression on people.
Operating a commercial-sized truck is demanding and complicated. Truckers must have the appropriate licensing and training, and they must comply with strict regulations that are in place to keep everyone safe. However, there are truckers who fail to meet these criteria and truckers who take avoidable risks.
Did you know that there are currently about 63,000 truck driving positions open in the United States? This labor shortage is worrisome, and reports state that it may not be getting any better. And it's not just affecting consumers dealing with price increases and delivery delays.