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Holiday Traffic Means More Truck Traffic: How to Stay Safe

by  on  Accident Attorney

Amazon and the United States Postal Service are combining forces to offer Sunday delivery of packages. At first, the Sunday delivery will be in New York and Los Angeles metropolitan areas; however, by 2014, the Sunday delivery service will be extended to most of the country. The US Postal Service Priority Mail Express already offers Sunday and holiday delivery for a small fee. 

More delivery days means more shipping. More shipping means more trucks on the roadways. More trucks on the roadways–especially during the high-traffic, high-volume holiday shopping season–means more truck accidents, warns Denver truck accident attorneys. The USDOT statistics show a 23 percent travel increase over the holiday season, and December is the leading month of auto accidents. From 2009 to 2010, there was a 9.1 percent increase in fatalities to occupants of other vehicles involved in accidents with a freight truck: the people most at risk when a large truck crashes are the drivers and passengers of other vehicles involved. For more information on risks while sharing the road with trucks and commercial vehicles, consult your Denver truck accident attorney.

Why? Trucks and commercial vehicles weigh on average 80,000 pounds while an average passenger vehicle weighs 3,000 pounds. All too often, truck drivers work longer hours than recommended to meet tight deadlines and stay on schedule, therefore driving while fatigued. Working under tight deadlines may also encourage speeding and a tendency to ignore hazardous road conditions in order to complete a job on time.

The Semi Truck Accident Victims Center advocates for victims of accidents involving semi-trucks and commercial vehicles. The Center offers the following safe driving tips for passenger vehicle drivers sharing the highway with semi-trucks or commercial vehicles during the holiday season:

  1. Never follow too closely to a semi-truck or commercial vehicle
  2. Do not pass a commercial vehicle or semi-truck if you cannot see their side 
    mirrors; if you cannot see their side mirrors, the driver cannot see you
  3. In severe weather, allow at least five or six car lengths between you and the
    commercial vehicle or a big rig. Never exceed the speed limit and adjust your
    speed according to the weather conditions
  4. Always be a courteous driver, allowing commercial vehicles and big rigs to merge 
    into or out of traffic at freeway or highway entrances and exits
  5. Do not pass semi-trucks, big rigs, or commercial vehicles on their left side
    at any time unless you can see the truck driver’s side mirrors; the left side of
    a semi-truck is frequently a blind spot

For more information on how to prevent truck-vehicle accidents, consult your Denver truck accident attorney.

Liability in Trucking accidents may involve more than one defendant. In many cases, a truck driver is employed by a contractor and/or trucking company, and they can be held legally responsible for the accident as well. Recovery of damages for physical, emotional and financial losses can be pursued against all identified defendants. For more information, contact your Denver trucking accident attorney at Levine Law today for a consultation.