There are many different factors that contribute to motor vehicle collisions. Road conditions, such as visibility issues at intersections or potholes, can contribute to the likelihood of a serious collision. Similarly, issues with the individual vehicles involved, such as malfunctioning brakes, can lead to a collision.
Weather, drivers’ skill levels, impairment and many other considerations can directly impact the likelihood of a severe crash. Everything from the time of day to the work schedule of the drivers can contribute to the overall risk for a collision.
When it comes to commercial trucking accidents, there is another concern that often gets overlooked. The employee culture at a commercial trucking company can directly relate to the likelihood of drivers getting into crashes.
Some companies put more emphasis on deadlines than safety
Trucking companies must deliver things on time. Delays in shipments can result in produce spoiling, beer getting skunked, or other issues, such as delays in production for a client who needed machinery or component parts. The end result may be a claim against the shipment or the loss of a client.
Many trucking companies have policies and cultures that focus on timely delivery above all other factors. Unfortunately, these policies rarely take into consideration the potential of weather and traffic conditions to increase transit time in delivering a load. Drivers could face penalties or lose out on pay for delayed or late deliveries.
That may force drivers to either exceed the speed limit, drive on roads not graded for semitrucks or even drive past when they are legally allowed to based on federal Hours of Service rules. Any of these decisions on the part of a driver could definitely increase the potential for a crash.
Work friendships can contribute to distraction and increase risk
There’s no doubt that commercial trucking is a demanding and socially isolating career path. To stave off the social and emotional effects of driving long hours, truck drivers often develop relationships with their co-workers.
Unfortunately, whether they choose to talk on the phone, send text messages or communicate via radios, the distraction that comes from communicating with friends while at the wheel could result in a crash. Similarly, any driver who reaches out to friends or family members while on the clock is also increasing their risk of a collision.
For the victims of trucking accidents, it is often necessary to seek compensation for both medical expenses and lost wages, to say nothing of the property damage that results from the crash.
If a toxic culture at the trucking company directly contributed to the driver’s actions, it may be possible to hold the business, as well as the individual driver, accountable for the injuries and losses you suffered.