Car and truck accidents in Homestead and other Florida towns cause devastation each year. There are a number of federal laws designed to keep drivers safe and prevent these types of accidents – so why do these traffic collisions in Homestead still take place. According to safety experts, the most common causes are:
1) Driver distraction. Since early October, no driver in Florida is allowed to text and drive. By federal law, commercial truck drivers are also not allowed to text and drive. However, distracted driving continues to be a leading cause of truck accidents, car accidents, and motorcycle accidents in Homestead and other communities. Part of the reason is that there are many types of distraction above and beyond mobile devices. A truck driver may be distracted by daydreaming, changing the music in the cab, eating a meal, or any number of other distractions.
2) Driver inexperience. Motor carriers are expected to screen and train drivers. Unfortunately, a labor shortage means that some trucking companies screen less carefully. At this time of year, when demand for deliveries and trucks is especially high, there can be pressure to accept less trained and less experienced drivers into a fleet.
3) Driver fatigue. Federal rules restrict how many hours truck drivers can be on the road before they have to rest. However, in many cases these rules are violated because of money concerns and deadlines. A truck driver may be pressured to deliver cargo by a specific deadline or may want to make more money by taking fewer breaks. In some cases, sleep apnea and other sleep disorders can also continue to driver fatigue, even if Hours of Service rules re obeyed.
4) Inebriation. Truck drivers are screened carefully but some do drink and drive or take medication that can make them sleepy on the road. Some drivers can even be unsafe on the road if they take over-the-counter or prescribed medication that can lead to drowsiness.
5) Mechanical Failure. Tire blowouts, brake failure, and other mechanical failure leads to trucking crashes each year. In some cases, these failures are caused by incorrect maintenance, by overloaded trucks, or by manufacturing defects.
6) Cargo problems. Trucks are limited as to how much cargo they are permitted to carry but in some cases truck carriers and drivers overload trucks in order to make more deliveries in less time and for less money. Overweight trucks are a danger because the extra weight puts extra pressure on tires and breaks, potentially leading to brake failure to tire blowouts. In some cases, cargo is loaded incorrectly. Even if a truck is within safe weight limits, incorrectly loaded cargo can shift and can cause a rollover or other accident.