In early December, a semi-truck carrying packages for the U.S. Postal Service crashed into another large semi-truck near Gainesville in the wee hours of the morning. The mail truck then burst into flames, destroying all of the packages on the truck, many of them probably holiday gifts. However, the packages were only one loss resulting from the accident—three people needed medical treatment and vehicles sustained extensive damage. Interstate 75 closed for several hours while crews put out the fire and cleaned up the wreckage.
What Could Have Caused the Crash?
While news reports have not indicated a specific cause of this crash, numerous factors commonly result in semi trucks accidents producing injuries and other losses, including:
- Fatigued driving – Truck drivers sit behind the wheel for long hours. Even if they abide by the hours of service limitations set out by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), drivers may become dangerously tired. Many truck drivers prefer to drive night shifts because they face less traffic on the highway. However, once the sun goes down, fatigue and falling asleep behind the wheel become greater risks.
- Speeding – As mentioned, fewer cars run on the interstates in the middle of the night, because most travelers pull off the road to sleep. With a largely open road in front of them, many truck drivers take this opportunity to push speed limits and cover ground faster. Even without traffic, however, speeding in a large 80,000-pound truck is extremely dangerous. Truck drivers who drive too fast can lose control if they hit a road hazard or if they take a turn too quickly.
- Distracted driving – Like any other driver, commercial drivers can easily become distracted. Using a smartphone is only one example of a truck driver distraction, as truck drivers may engage in a lot of distracting activities behind the wheel. Many drivers eat or drink while driving, listen to engaging podcasts that can cause mental distractions, and more. All of these distractions can lead to serious—and possibly fiery—crashes.
These are only some common causes of truck accidents—and not necessarily what caused the recent collision in Gainesville. Luckily, people only suffered minor injuries in that crash, because the collision and resulting fire could have caused widespread damage and injuries.
A Gainesville Truck Accident Lawyer Can Help You
The truck accident attorneys at Meldon Law have seen the severe damage that truck accident injuries and losses can cause. We represent clients in and around Gainesville after all types of accidents, including complex commercial truck crashes. To learn more, please contact us online or call (800) 373-8000 to schedule your free consultation today.