15th November 2021
There’s always a risk for a devastating collision between a car and a commercial truck, no matter what time of the year it may be. But the risk gets even higher during the holiday season. Icy roads, hurried drivers and exhausted truckers trying to make deadlines can combine for disastrous results.
The experienced truck accident attorneys with Sand Law are standing by to help if you or someone close to you has been severely injured or killed due to another party’s negligence. Get in touch with us as soon as you can so that we can provide you with a complimentary review of your case. Call 701-609-1510 or use our online form to learn more.
The following is a look at why the holidays are so dangerous for truck accidents, how to avoid one, and how an attorney may be able to help if you’re the victim of this kind of catastrophe.
An Increase in Trucks on the Road Around the Holidays
You’re typically a lot busier during the holidays, right? You’re probably trying to get in as much work as you can before you take time off, and you’re rushing around town trying to get gifts for your loved ones. Well, truck drivers are people, too, of course. They’re under the same kinds of stress as everyone else this time of year.
But when there are more truck drivers on the road during the winter, and they’re also trying to get their work completed, that increases the chances for horrible accidents. Truck drivers always face tight deadlines – they only get tighter during the holiday season. The risk of accidents gets even higher because many companies are forced to hire inexperienced drivers on a temporary basis.
A commercial truck can be a very complicated piece of machinery. Unless you have years behind the wheel, it will be very easy to make a mistake. But even if they’re seasoned drivers, they may often have their minds on other things, such as trying to get home to their families for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Distractions are dangerous enough for people who drive cars. When you put a distracted driver at the helm of an 80,000-pound truck, you can easily see what could happen.
North Dakota Truck Accident Fatalities During the Holidays
In a perfect world, there would be zero vehicle accidents – especially during what’s supposed to be the happiest time of the year. The hard truth is that the holiday season is actually a very dangerous time to be on the road.
According to one study, there are an average of 231 fatalities on Christmas alone across the U.S., and 245 fatal crashes on New Year’s Eve. North Dakota is obviously not immune from the problem. Between 2015-2019, 99 North Dakotans lost their lives during the months of November, December and January.
Why do More Truck Accidents Occur Around the Winter Season?
Truck drivers are arguably under even more pressure during the holiday season, because they’re being counted on to deliver goods that will eventually sit under Christmas trees across the country. As a result, truckers may be prone to speeding. They may actually have an incentive to drive too fast, since many companies provide bonuses for completing more deliveries during the Christmas season.
Of course, with all that stress and pressure, truckers are exhausted. When they’re fatigued, they don’t think as clearly, and they can’t react as quickly when something unexpected happens. Truckers will also sometimes hit the road immediately after a company party, even though they may be inebriated. This will obviously increase the chances for a drunk driving accident.
This time of year can also be especially brutal when it comes to weather, with blinding snowstorms. Even if the weather is clear, a truck driver can hit a patch of black ice and careen out of control.
Tips for Staying Safe on the Roads this Winter
We’re not trying to convince anyone just to stay home until springtime, obviously. There are ways that you can protect yourself when you’re near trucks, regardless of what the calendar may say. Try to keep the following tips in mind and the chances are you’ll stay safe and sound.
- Leave plenty of room for nearby trucks. They need a lot more room to come to a stop than you do. Also, a truck can easily tip over if the driver has to suddenly brake, or swerve to try to avoid hitting something. The wider the berth you give trucks, the safer you’ll be.
- Whether the temperature is 70 degrees or 10 below, you’ll never want to be in a truck driver’s blind spot. Just like car drivers can sometimes find it hard to see motorcycles, it can be difficult for truck drivers to know a car is present. If you can’t see the driver’s face in their side-view mirror, they probably can’t see you.
- Slowing down will always be important – especially during the winter. You’ll have a better chance of avoiding an accident.
Contact an Attorney if You Get into a Truck Accident
You’ll have to get in touch with an experienced attorney as soon as you possibly can if you’re the victim of a trucking accident. A legal representative will know what needs to be done in order to help you obtain the compensation you deserve for your suffering. This can be a very complicated area of the law; one you won’t be able to navigate on your home. Your attorney will focus on winning your case, while you focus on getting better as soon as you can.
Attorneys know how to negotiate with insurance companies, and also know how to identify all the potentially liable parties. The truck driver might not have been the only one who was negligent. The people who loaded the truck, for instance, may not have done so safely, creating an imbalanced load that caused the trick to tip over. A negligently manufactured component, such as the truck’s brakes, may have failed.
The attorneys with Sand Law know how to make sure everyone who played a role in your accident is held accountable for your injuries. If you would like to schedule a free consultation, please contact us online or call 701-609-1510.