The holiday season is a busy time for families and businesses. The increased traffic on roadways during the holidays causes an exponential increase in traffic accidents and fatalities. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly a third of all traffic fatalities occur between November and January. The increase in holiday travelers and commercial trucks transporting holiday goods is a terrible combination for roadways, often leading to serious accidents.
Trucking accidents are quite common during the holidays, but defensive driving and smart preparation can keep you and your family safe this winter. National Safety Council reporting shows that over a third of all fatal trucking accidents happen between November and January each year. Because commercial trucks are typically much larger than passenger vehicles, over 65% of trucking accident fatality victims are from passenger vehicles. These shocking statistics suggest a serious problem plaguing roadways during the holiday season. Why are there so many trucking accidents during the holidays?
What’s Causing the Increase in Trucking Accidents During the Holiday Season?
Many factors contribute to the increase in fatal trucking accidents during the holiday season. For many areas of the country, these fatalities can be attributed to seasonal weather. Rainy, icy, and snow-covered roadways can contribute to many fatal crashes during the holidays, but in areas where treacherous winter weather is not common, what could be causing these crashes?
There are other causes of fatal trucking accidents that contribute to holiday increases, including the following:
Holiday Transport Schedules: The holiday season is a peak earning period for many companies. Truck drivers are often pushed to meet tight deadlines and take unnecessary risks to hit their goals.
Inexperienced Commercial Drivers: More new drivers have been on the roads in the past couple of years to accommodate driver shortages. New drivers have less time on roadways than veterans, which can lead to more accidents.
Holiday Travelers: The period between November and January includes three major holidays. Drivers take the roadways in mass to shop for gifts and supplies or visit family and friends during the holidays. Additionally, more trucks transporting supplies on roadways can lead to increased traffic and accidents.
Tired Drivers: From truck drivers trying to meet deadlines to families taking road trips to visit loved ones for holiday festivities, it’s easy to find oneself tired behind the wheel.
- Maintenance Issues: With tight shipping and delivery schedules, companies may not have the time to take trucks off the road to perform important maintenance checks.
Who’s Liable in a Trucking Accident?
When two passenger vehicles collide, there are two drivers who could be at fault. Trucking accidents are different. Commercial truck drivers are employees. Their truck is not their private vehicle, so if they are at fault in the accident, there could be other negligent parties involved as well.
In a trucking accident, there could be multiple liable parties, such as:
- The Driver: The truck driver could have been driving their truck recklessly. They could have ignored traffic laws and made negligent choices when operating their truck.
- The Company: The company that owns the truck in the accident could be responsible for the crash if the truck was not properly maintained or if they intimidated the driver, forcing them to take unnecessary risks when operating their truck.
- The Manufacturer: The manufacturer of the truck could be responsible for the accident if the truck malfunctioned and that incident led to the accident. Defective or recalled parts could be responsible for unresponsive systems that caused the truck to perform erratically.
How McHargue & Jones, LLC Can Help You
At McHargue & Jones, LLC, our team has worked for many years to provide accident victims throughout the area with strong legal advocacy. We help clients fight for the compensation they deserve after being injured in a trucking accident due to negligence. Taking on a truck accident case requires experience handling multiple liable parties and the fortitude to fight big companies! If you’ve been injured in a trucking accident due to no fault of your own, you could be entitled to compensation. Contact our attorneys to schedule a consultation, so we can begin working on your case immediately. Call (312) 487-2461 to schedule a consultation today!