Truck accidents are sudden, traumatic events that cause a lot of pain and damage. In 2015, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported 415,000 large trucks were involved in crashes. Reducing that number will require an understanding of what causes accidents and how to stop them from happening. The trucking industry has options that could improve trucker safety and prevent truck accidents in the future.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident in Wisconsin, you don’t have to go through it alone. The Milwaukee truck accident lawyers at Urban & Taylor have experience in these cases and compassion for their clients. We’ll do everything we can to get justice for you or your loved one.
Technological Trucker Hats
A new invention is reimagining the trucker hat and outfitting it with technology that will help keep drivers awake and alert while driving their big rigs. Ford worked with creative agency GTB and they developed the Ford SafeCap.
By researching what head motions indicating exhaustion or the potential to fall asleep, the company designed the Ford SafeCap to recognize these movements and respond to them. If a driver starts to nod off or their head falls backward, the hat will vibrate, make sounds, and produce light so the driver wakes up. When they correct their posture that shows they’re alert, the hat will stop.
While the hat isn’t available yet because Ford wants to conduct more research and refine the hat, this invention could change the trucking industry. Trucking companies could make these hats as part of a uniform so all of their truck drivers have a device that’s looking out for them.
Some truck accidents are caused by small vehicles colliding with the side of the truck and is forced underneath the truck. This phenomenon usually kills the passengers in the small vehicle. A similar problem used to happen with the backs of trucks, but they have rear guards to prevent this. Seeing this solution, many have been advocating that trucks need side guards.
Truck companies are hesitant to adopt these safety measures because they say the side guards will compromise the structural integrity of the trucks, but this hasn’t been proven. Critics say the trucking companies don’t want to spend the money to outfit their trucks with side guards.
If truck companies had these guards, they could prevent many accidents on the road. While incorrect merging or lane changes will probably still happen, they won’t have to end with tragedies.
Enforce Sleep Regulations
While truck drivers already have sleep regulations, they don’t always follow them. Their work schedules often make them choose between following the rules or being on time. In some companies, workers are afraid of retribution for voicing that they’re being overworked.
When exhausted drivers are at the wheel, they can easily drift into other lanes and cause accidents. The FMCSA reported that swerving into other lanes or off the road is one of the main critical events that causes accidents.
Truck companies can make all the difference in this. By adjusting their schedules and allowing their workers to have adequate time for sleep, they could drastically reduce the number of drowsy drivers.