Driver distraction is a major problem for truckers, as the temptation to multi-task can be elevated after thousands of hours on the road. These drivers may also reassure themselves that they are less likely to cause an accident due to distraction because they have logged so much experience that they are likelier to be able to react quickly enough to changing road conditions to swerve or brake in time. This is not the case.
Even in the best of circumstances, attempting to watch a video or check your mobile phone is likely to result in a drastically increased chance of accident. The more distracting the media, the more likely a problem will occur. But one driver in Minnesota engaged in such reckless behavior that the chances of disaster must have been significantly amplified.
Media reports indicate that the driver was watching a pornographic scene on his phone right before a fatal accident occurred wherein he rear-ended a pickup truck. The semi was traveling the speed limit, but the truck it struck was going much slower, likely due to it being a construction zone. Had the semi driver not been distracted, it is likely he would have braked in time.
It is impossible to know how commonplace it is for truck drivers to view this type of material while driving, but it is all but certain this is not a unique situation. Every near-miss observed on the highway could be caused by a trucker deciding to prioritize titillation over safe driving.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident with a semi or other large vehicle, determining whether or not distracted driving played a role can prove difficult. Having access to the data history of the trucker’s phone is often your only chance. Please consult with a qualified attorney about how to move forward with your case.