A new study on long haul truck drivers has implications for other vehicle operators as well. The study, conducted by the University of Utah, attempted to determine what factors were most commonly associated with accidents. Researchers surveyed large numbers of truck drivers and asked them a few questions about what types of risky behaviors they saw from other truck drivers and from themselves.
Though some of the truckers didn’t want to answer, most were willing to work with the researchers because everyone benefits from safer roads. It is impossible to know how honest all of the answers were, because the drivers might not have felt comfortable sharing certain key details, but there was a great deal of useful information in the study.
The answers the truckers gave validated many long-held assumptions. The factors most associated with accidents were:
- Fatigue, which is particularly common with long haul drivers, due to the necessity of delivering their load within the scheduled time
- Cell phone use, which is a common problem with all types of drivers
- High pulse pressure, which is the difference between the diastolic and systolic readings on a blood pressure machine
Researchers are still attempting to determine how high pulse pressure contributes to an increased likelihood of accident. There are a number of potential health issues that could contribute, and there is also the possibility that the long hours truckers work contribute to the development of high pulse pressure.
One of the most common causes of serious accidents for non-truck drivers, driving under the influence, was thankfully absent from this list. Perhaps truck drivers are more responsible than the general public when it comes to drinking and driving. Distracted driving, however, was seen as a major problem.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident, it is reasonably likely that fatigue, distraction, or drunk driving played a role in the crash. Determining precisely what role they might have played can be difficult without significant experience. If you have any questions about your accident, contact an experienced attorney who can help you get the answers two which you are entitled.