Big Rigs And You: How Safe Are Our Roads?

Driving near a big rig truck can be intimidating, even for experienced drivers with a number of years behind the wheel. You may take extra precautions when driving around these mammoth 18 wheelers, but you still may find some serious factors unavoidable and an accident imminent. Big rig accidents can happen for a variety of reasons and their outcomes can tragically end up with the loss of property, injuries and life.


One of the most common causes of truck accidents is speeding. Going fast in an automobile is extremely dangerous, but a truck driver pulling over 80,000 pounds of weight behind them can have disastrous results to other individuals on the roadway. Big rigs need time to brake, and stopping quickly can cause them to lose control of the truck and take out other vehicles in the process. As expressed by a North Carolina truck accident lawyer, “Accidents involving trucks are frequently very serious and often more difficult to deal with than auto only accidents. All vehicles engaged in interstate traffic are governed by federal law.”

Some truckers have even been known to tailgate and ride the rear of other vehicles in front of them in hopes of bullying them to move to the other lane. This form of road rage can cause fatalities to other innocent drivers due to the size and weight of the rig.

Improperly Maintained Rigs

A big rig needs to be checked and thoroughly maintained in order to run properly. Long days on the road with a heavy load can cause wear and tear on the truck. Small things such as tire pressure and transmission can be at the helm of a serious accident if a truck has not met the appropriate standards and safety requirements.

Driver Fatigue

Federal regulations are in place to protect other drivers on the road and prevent truckers from falling asleep at the wheel. The primary job of a truck is to drive and carry goods to the appropriate destination. The more miles they cover, the more money they can make. Many times a driver will falsify their log and stay on the road way beyond what is safe. A drowsy driver is just as dangerous as someone who drinks and drives.

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Driving Under The Influence

In order to meet their destination requirements, many big rig operators will find dangerous methods of staying awake such as using uppers and prescription drugs. Others may consume alcohol and non-prescription drugs to deal with problems and depression. Truck drivers are not allowed to have a blood alcohol level that exceeds 0.02, but you’ll still find there are many drunk and drugged big rig operators traversing the open road ways.

Driver Errors

Not all semi operators have the proper training and experience necessary to handle such a big mode of transportation. Turns, braking, misjudging road conditions and improper lane usage can have serious consequences for unsuspecting drivers and pedestrians. Some truckers may also have an endless list of road violations, tickets and driving without a proper license. Big rigs can be a powerful and menacing piece of machinery on the road. However, truckers need to know that they don’t own the highway, and they should have to obey the laws just like every other driver. Because of their negligence, they could cause considerable damage to personal property and the loss of other individual’s lives.

Having grown up around big rigs at her late father’s company gives Nadine Swayne the insight to offer this information. At Auger & Auger, a North Carolina truck accident lawyer firm, they fight for their clients who have been victims of trucking accidents. With over 35 years of collective experience, they work strenuously in the service of every case.

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