When truck crashes happen, you might think the driver is to blame. Sometimes they are. However, sometimes when you look deeper, it is the trucking company that is the real villain.
Trucking companies can pressure drivers into unsafe practices
Last year the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) relaxed driver hours regulations. Drivers did not ask for this. Trucking companies did. It has enabled them to send drivers out for longer, with fewer breaks. While it will help freight companies increase their bottom line, it poses a severe safety risk for drivers and other road users. As the people in charge of the largest, most weather-prone vehicles on the road, truckers must get the rest they need.
A recent talk on how to retain staff highlighted what makes truck drivers more likely to stay with the same company. It highlights the fact that most truckers want to do their job and get home to their family the same as we all do:
- Good pay: Drivers who earn a decent wage do not need to take on extra shifts to survive. They can achieve a better work-life balance. They will be safer on the roads.
- Safety: Drivers want an employer who values their lives, not one who regards them as an expendable resource. A company that prioritizes driver safety makes the country’s highways a safer place for everyone else.
- Support: Being out on the road can be tough. The best companies help their drivers do things such as to save for their own homes. They try to reduce everyday stress on their drivers so that they can concentrate on the road.
Sadly, not all trucking companies reach these standards. That is why the roads are full of tired and stressed truckers who might not be driving at their best. When a truck crashes, it can have devastating consequences. If injured, it is important to investigate why the crash happened. It may be that the trucking company is to blame.