In New York, you might encounter quite a few commercial vehicles on your commute every day, thanks to consumer demand for goods bolstering the trucking industry. While the growing need for increased shipping across the nation’s highways indicates a healthy economy, the physical strain from long hours on the road may be detrimental to the individual health of truckers. According to Science Daily, the lifestyle that comes from long days on the road and difficult shifts is linked to health conditions that compromise commercial vehicle operators’ ability to drive, as well as your safety on the roads around them.
Whenever alcohol enters the system, alteration of focus, concentration and mental clarity begin to occur. The New York Department of Motor Vehicles claims that alcohol can cause jerky starts and improper passing as well as preventing drivers from staying in their lanes. Drunk drivers also commonly run red lights and fail to use signals. Even at low blood alcohol concentration levels, drivers may be less alert and find that their vehicle operation skills are impaired.
Fatigue is a serious problem that affects truck drivers across the country. Drowsy driving alone is often deadly, and can be even more dangerous when combined with additional hazards, such as icy roads or sun glare. In 2015, 126 people were killed in New York State in large truck accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This number was higher than the previous several years, indicating that there may be serious safety issues regarding the trucking industry and the general public.
New York State is known for its congested highways and the prevalence of large trucks sharing the roads. Over the years, numerous accidents involving big rigs have caused concern among not only the public, but local legislators.
During the fall, road construction sites across New York are likely to be wrapping up to prepare for winter. For the next few weeks, drivers in Schenectady and elsewhere may encounter construction equipment, cones, lane closures and workers who are attempting to get the job done before cold weather sets in.
In recent posts, this blog has discussed the dangers that large trucks pose for motorists on American highways. Truck-related fatalities are by no means limited to those sharing the road with truckers. Truck drivers themselves are at risk each time they get behind the wheel.
Large commercial trucks are a common sight on highways near Schenectady, as well as across the country. While trucking is a necessary industry, it also results in thousands of accidents each year. As discussed in previous posts, truck collisions have the potential to cause devastating harm, due to the size and speed of these large vehicles.
Now that the weather has warmed up, drivers in Schenectady and across New York State will have to contend with a road hazard that is no less dangerous than winter weather conditions. During the spring, summer and early fall, road workers can be found on highways and interstates everywhere, improving the condition and safety of our high-speed roadways.
While they play a vital role in transporting goods throughout the U.S., large commercial trucks can also be extremely dangerous and, during 2014 alone, 3,660 people were killed in traffic accidents involving large trucks. During this same year, 97 percent of the individuals who died in fatal truck accidents were occupants in passenger vehicles.
During 2014 alone, the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration reports that a total 3,903 people died in crashes involving large commercial trucks. Weighing several tons more than the average personal vehicle and barreling down our nation's freeways at 70 MPH, it's no wonder that individuals who are involved in traffic accidents involving commercial trucks often suffer serious, debilitating and even fatal injuries.