Truck Accidents: Lack of Training

Truck accidents resulting from negligence are totally preventable. Since these large rigs can we up to 80,000 pounds or more, it’s extremely important that all drivers are properly trained and licensed. These rigs have complicated braking systems and require competent, well-trained and licensed drivers. Thankfully, under federal regulations, drivers of commercial vehicles are required to undergo specific training courses before being able to legally operate a large truck. There is so much more to driving a truck than just well, driving the truck. Drivers also have to learn about federal regulations involving hours in service, health maintenance safety and other issues facing drivers of commercial vehicles on U.S. roadways. A lack of training can be a direct contributing factor in a variety of different types of truck accidents.

FMCSA’s Truck Driver Training Regulations

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the federal agency tasked with regulating the commercial trucking industry. They set out guidelines and industry requirements for the training of commercial drivers. In addition to background checks and training courses, drivers must also disclose any medical healthcare issues that could impact their ability to safely drive the long haul. Satisfying all other training and qualification regulations, drivers must also pass licensing tests that show they have the technical skills to actually get behind the wheel of a big rig and drive it safely. In addition to driving skills, they also have to be able to accurately recognize any mechanical issues that might contribute to trouble on the roadway. This includes problems with brakes and tires. Finally, they have to stay current.

Commercial Driver’s License (CDL)

The Commercial Driver’s License, also known as CDL, is the license that drivers get in order to legally operate semi trucks. Drivers are tested on the technical driving skills and their knowledge. It’s important to note that the basic CDL license doesn’t give carte blanche to drivers to get behind the wheel of any type of rig. Drivers who are hauling more than one trailer, tanks, hazardous materials or passengers will be required to meet additional licensing and safety requirements.

Unqualified Truck Drivers

Unqualified or poorly trained truck drivers are a menace to society. Accidents involving trucks are often devastating or catastrophic for drivers and passengers in smaller cars and light trucks. Big rig drivers need to have the training to safely get their load from one place to another without endangering the lives of others. If drivers haven’t been properly trained for their vehicles, there needs to some accountability. If a lack of training contributed to the truck accident you were injured in, you need a personal injury lawyer on your side with truck accident case experience. Listed below are just a few different types of driver error that can be due to a lack of training.

Driver Errors Associated With a Lack of Training
  • Failure to navigate curve or corner safely
  • Failure to observe posted height restrictions
  • Failure to properly secure the load
  • Failure to ensure the load weight was properly distributed
  • Failure to take appropriate actions to slow or stop the truck when necessary
  • Failure to safely drive the truck up or downhill properly
  • Failure to observe obvious problems with the truck, including brake and lighting problems
Familiarity With Vehicle and Braking System

Ultimately, a lack of training means that a driver may not have the required and necessary familiarity with his or her vehicle and braking system. There are so many things that can go wrong on the open road, and a properly trained driver knows his or her rig. Down to every tire, the driver needs to stay on top of all potential maintenance issues and ensure his or her rig is in top working order, and in the event of an emergency, know when and how to properly utilize the braking system.

After a Truck Accident in Jackson

A lack of training in the commercial truck driver can put everybody on the road at great risk for injury causing and potentially fatal accidents. These aren’t small passenger occupant vehicles, these are large tractor trailers and semi trucks that can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. The proper training and licensing of these drivers needs to be industry-wide priorities to ensure safe roadways in Mississippi and across the nation.

If you have been injured or if you have lost a loved one in an accident involving a semi truck, tractor trailer or other type of commercial hauling vehicle, contact the skilled and proven truck accident team at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC at (601) 948-1600 for a free consultation today.

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