Drivers who do not recognize the road that they are on not only get lost but can become distracted, confused, and frustrated, which can lead to negligent or reckless driving.
One of the top causes of accidents are drivers unfamiliar with the area they are driving in. When a driver is unfamiliar with a road, they not only can get lost, but can become distracted while trying to navigate. Drivers of commercial motor vehicles often travel to new destinations where they will be unfamiliar with the route, which presents a serious risk, as many drivers will be tempted to look away from the road and down at a map or directions. The Large Truck Crash Causation Study found that approximately 22% of all crashes involving commercial motor vehicles are caused by drivers who were unfamiliar with the route they were driving.
One reason why truckers fail to plan ahead is because of strict time constraints.
Truckers must get their cargo to its destination on time or risk being punished by their employer. Although there are hours-of-service regulations in place so drivers can allot time to rest and plan routes, they often do not take them. If a driver does not have a global positioning device (GPS), then it would be best for them to take the time and plan a route before they embark on their journey. Some drivers are even required to have paper proof of a route plan, such as drivers carrying hazardous materials.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there are about 4,000 to 5,000 fatal accidents involving large trucks each year. In addition to this, there are about 77,000 accidents involving large trucks that result in injuries. If 22% of those accidents are caused by drivers who poorly planned their routes, this means nearly 17,000 people are injured and around 1,000 people are killed each year due to drivers unfamiliar with the roads they were traveling.
While many drivers of passenger vehicles use GPS to get around, some GPS are specially equipped for commercial purposes. In fact, some truck drivers are required to use GPS systems. This satellite navigation device allows truckers to stay on the correct route without looking at a map—they simply have to follow the instructions of their GPS. However, since these devices are electronic, they are subject to malfunction. A malfunctioning GPS can cause a driver to become confused. Some GPS used by the trucking industry also include monitors that can record the amount of time a trucker is driving. While serving the purpose of safe navigation, these types of GPS also ensure that drivers are keeping with the federal hours-of-service and speed regulations.
Not only are GPS devices distracting, but they are not always designed for commercial trucks, meaning they could navigate truckers down roads that are not equipped to handle big rigs.Learn More
You may have been involved in a collision with a truck because they quickly changed their course of direction. Often, when drivers are confused or lost, they make irrational decisions. When a driver does not pull over to figure out where they are at, but continues to drive while distracted, this could present a serious liability. Our firm can help hold liable parties accountable.
If you were involved in an accident with a driver unfamiliar with the roads, contact Arnold & Itkin today.