Spotlight on Distracted Driving: Addressing Cell Phone Use Among Truck Drivers
Glen Larson Law Injury Attorneys are committed advocates for accident victims throughout Texas who understand the potentially devastating consequences of distracted driving. When distracted drivers are behind the wheels of commercial vehicles, the potential for catastrophic injuries and tragic fatalities grows exponentially.
This blog post discusses the risky and dangerous trend of truck drivers using cell phones and emphasizes the need to address this behavior to enhance road safety and save lives in Texas.
The Impact of Distracted Driving on Truck Accidents
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted driving is any activity that diverts attention from driving, including talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, talking to people in your vehicle, fiddling with the stereo, entertainment, or navigation system — anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving — increasing the risk of collisions.
When a distracted driver is behind the wheel of a large truck or 18-wheeler, potentially weighing up to 80,000 pounds, the consequences of a crash can be devastating. Unfortunately, 73% of the time, the smaller vehicles’ occupants pay the price.
Understanding the Risks of Cell Phone Use While Driving
Long-haul truck drivers are like others who want to remain connected with loved ones and the news while on the road. This can lead to phone calls, texting, checking emails, or browsing the internet from their cellphones.
Using a mobile device while driving can significantly impair a driver’s reaction time and cognitive abilities. Typing or dialing, even hands-free, can take a truck driver’s attention away from the road for several seconds, placing everyone nearby in danger.
Federal Regulations and Consequences
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) — the lead federal government agency responsible for regulating and providing safety oversight of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) to reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks — has implemented strict regulations to curb distracted driving among commercial truck drivers.
Federal law prohibits truck drivers from using hand-held mobile devices while operating a commercial motor vehicle. Unfortunately, truck drivers often disobey the law, just as other Texas motorists do, when they text and drive behind the wheel. Violations of these regulations can result in severe penalties, including fines and potential disqualification from driving. Worse, violating these necessary regulations can lead to catastrophic crashes and consequences.
Investing in Technology Solutions & Promoting a Safety-First Culture
Technological solutions that help monitor and curb distracted driving among trucker drivers nationwide can help track driver behavior and offer real-time feedback to drivers and fleet managers.
In addition, hands-free communication systems allow truck drivers to stay connected without compromising their safety or other motorists on Texas roadways. However, this approach takes everyone — from truck drivers and trucking companies to truck manufacturers and maintenance crews — to buy into a safety-first culture.
Creating a safety-first culture emphasizing the importance of undivided attention on the road can significantly reduce the temptation to use cell phones or other electronic devices while driving.
Taking Legal Action in Distracted Driving Accident, Injury, and Fatality Cases
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a distracted truck driver, seeking legal representation immediately is essential.
Glen Larson Law Injury Attorneys will thoroughly investigate the case, gather evidence, and advocate for your rights to secure the compensation you deserve for medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, and future care.
Contact Our Skilled Personal Injury Attorney Today
Call our skilled personal injury attorneys in Austin at (512) 883-0277 or contact us online today to schedule a free consultation. We pursue dedicated, driven results for our clients, and there is never a charge to talk to an attorney. We stand ready to help you.