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Truck safety administration calls for hands on approach to safety

Large truck accidents are on the rise, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Statistics show a three-year rise in fatalities among truck occupants and work zone accidents involving large trucks. Though high-tech measures can make trucks safer, the administrative agency claims that truck drivers in California and elsewhere can take other immediate steps to reduce these statistics.

According to the FMCSA, there were increases in both accidents and fatalities among large trucks between 2015 and 2017. The FMCSA points out that more than one-third of all truck occupant fatalities involved victims not wearing a seatbelt. Though drivers report seat belt use at an all-time high of 86 percent, advocates say the figure should be closer to 100 percent. It could prevent nearly one-third of all deaths.

Another statistic with a potential solution involves work zone accidents. Over 30 percent of these accidents involve a large truck. Truck drivers, due to their higher vantage point in a cab, are better able to see possible dangers than those on the ground. In work zones, truckers are urged to use directional signals and four-way flashers as warning devices.

Distracted driving is another issue that plagues many truckers. The FMCSA's recommendation in this area goes beyond texting avoidance. Truckers are urged to adjust seats, mirrors, radios and other things before the truck is in motion. Phones should be set in a holder or an area where it will not fall while driving.

Truck drivers, like all other drivers are required to drive in a reasonable manner and to avoid driving while distracted. Those injured due to a driver falling below this standard may want to meet with a personal injury attorney.

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