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Tracking time behind the wheel does not reduce truck accidents

As Colorado readers know, truck accidents happen for many reasons, and they frequently cause significant damage. The large size and heavy weight of this type of vehicle can greatly damage a smaller vehicle during a collision, causing significant injury to the occupants. It is critical for the trucking industry to implement safety measures and do everything possible to protect the interests of all motorists.

One common cause for truck accidents is the number of hours a trucker spends behind the wheel. Too many hours on the road leads to fatigue, and fatigue leads to poor decisions and a greater chance for accidents. In order to combat this problem, truckers have to use electronic logging devices, ELDs, to input their hours. This is to ensure adherence to hours of operation regulations.

ELDs and the rate of accidents

The federal government passed new regulations that now require semitrailers and certain types of large trucks to use ELDs. In the past, drivers kept up with their hours by logging them in a book, but not all truckers were honest in the number of hours they spent working. ELDs are more accurate. However, statistics indicate that the implementation of these devices has not really accomplished its main goal – to reduce the number of truck accidents. 

Studies that looked at the implementation of these devices and accident statistics found that the results are not what many expected them to be. In order to understand more about the issue of ELDs and how they impact driver behavior, it may be helpful to consider the following:

  • It appears that more drivers are meeting hours of service regulations after the implementation of ELDs. However, there is no measurable impact on the accident rate.
  • Some truck drivers may be speeding more in order to offset the limitations on their hours behind the wheel.
  • Behaviors that attempt to compensate for restrictions set by the use of ELDs may eventually lead to more truck accidents.

If you are the victim of a truck accident, it is possible that the driver behind the wheel was fatigued, distracted, speeding or acting negligently in some way. You could have a rightful claim to financial compensation through a personal injury claim, but it is smart to act quickly.

You may find significant benefit in discussing your case and your legal options in a case assessment and evaluation with an attorney experienced in complex truck accident claims.

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