The holiday season is always a dangerous time for drivers. Heavy traffic and drunk driving lead to large numbers of fatalities. However, those aren’t the only factors that lead to driving fatalities. Speeding is also a big factor, contributing to about 30% of all traffic fatalities. Speeding is dangerous under any circumstance, but speeding becomes all the more dangerous when large trucks are exceeding the speed limit. About one in eight fatal driving accidents involve a truck. Christmas and New Year’s both happen to be two of the deadliest holidays for speed-related fatal crashes. Unsurprisingly, there are extremely tight delivery deadlines for countless truck drivers during those holidays. Traffic, speeding and tight deadlines is a recipe for disaster. So just how serious is this issue?
Statistics show that truck drivers aren’t in as much danger as those drivers traveling the roads in smaller vehicles. According to statistics, of the 43,636 fatalities on the road in 2005, 5226 of them involved a truck. But of the 5,226 fatalities involving a truck, only 761 were actually occupants in a truck. Clearly, other drivers are the ones at greater risk when truck drivers speed.
What Can Be Done?
Part of the problem is tight deadlines for deliveries. Truck drivers need to be allotted sufficient time to complete their deliveries. The temptation to speed will not be completely eliminated unless more realistic delivery deadlines are set. But until the necessary changes are made, there are some things you can do to try and avoid accidents with speeding truck drivers. Be aware that it takes a much longer time for a large truck to brake than for a smaller vehicle. With that said, it is important not to cut quickly in front of large trucks. You should also be aware of the blind spots for large trucks. By staying out of their blind spots you increase your chances of staying safe. Lastly, if you see a truck driver speeding and he or she appears to be endangering the lives of others do not hesitate to contact local authorities and report that driver. The holidays are a very dangerous time for drivers, but it doesn’t have to remain that way forever. More realistic deadlines and safety precautions can lead to much safer roads in the future.