“Fatal Thursday” is a new term used in the trucking industry to describe the day of the week when truck drivers experience more fatal wrecks than on any other day. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, close to 500,000 large trucks weighing 10,000 pounds or more are involved in accidents each year, resulting in more than 5,000 fatalities and another 140,000 injuries.
There are many reasons for this Fatal Thursday trend. The first is the fact that truck drivers are notoriously more fatigued by the end of the work week. Long hauls and driving shifts can lead to extreme fatigue. Sleep apnea and heart disease are common medical conditions for many truckers, which can cause sleep deprivation. Tired truckers also have slower reaction times and can experience trouble concentrating.
Mechanical problems on trucks also lead to serious and sometimes fatal truck accidents. The push to deliver or haul loads during the week increases by Thursday, and a driver who notices a possible mechanical problem may put an inspection or repair off until a less crucial day of the week. Routine maintenance and inspection of trucks needs to be done to avoid accidents.
The Department of Labor reports that 70 percent of accidents involving commercial trucks are caused by automobiles. Driver error, distracted driving, speeding, sudden lane changes, and traveling in the blind spot of large trucks lead to a large portion of trucking accidents.
Thursdays See an Increase in Commuters
Moreover, Thursday traffic picks up as many people wind down for the weekend. College students often travel home for the weekend on this day, and families embark on extended weekend getaways. Entertainment and sporting events that occur toward the end of the week increase traffic on major highways and interstates where large trucks travel. Motorists need to be extra cautious when sharing the road with large trucks to ensure their safety.
Truck drivers need to be vigilant and follow safety precautions to decrease the likelihood of an accident. It is imperative that truckers rest enough between their shifts, taking time to unwind and sleep. For those with health problems, medical intervention is needed to ensure that conditions like heart disease and sleep apnea do not contribute to trucking accidents. Mechanical issues on trucks need to be addressed immediately and regular inspections must be conducted to address problems before they create a safety hazard.
Accidents involving commercial trucks and automobiles often result in fatalities, especially for drivers and passengers in cars. The sheer weight and size of a commercial truck is no match for an average sized passenger vehicle. The safety of everyone on the road depends largely on the diligence of commercial truck drivers to adhere to safe driving practices.
Baltimore Truck Driving Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Clients Injured in Trucking Accidents
An accident involving a car and a commercial truck can result in serious and often fatal injuries. If you or someone you know has been injured in a trucking accident, call the Baltimore truck accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton at 800-547-4LAW (4529), or contact us online to schedule a consultation today. Our offices are located in Baltimore, Glen Burnie, Columbia, and Towson, serving Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, and Montgomery County, as well as Southern Maryland, Maryland’s Western Counties, and the Eastern Shore.