Semi-tractor trailers are a familiar sight in Arkansas and around the country, and road users rely on federal safety regulations to ensure that these large and heavy vehicles are adequately maintained and their drivers properly trained. Federal laws limit the amount of uninterrupted time that truck and bus drivers can spend behind the wheel, but experts point out that it is possible for drivers to be fatigued to the point of exhaustion while remaining well within the law. The Minnesota State Police at one time provided its officers with a truck driver fatigue checklist, but it was struck down in 2011 for violating the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
A rule change by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will now require approximately 3 million commercial drivers to log their hours electronically. Since 1938, drivers in Arkansas and around the country have been required to log their hours on paper, but it has been argued that it is too easy to change them or create two sets of logs. New electronic recording tools will keep track of how many miles have been traveled and the actual location of the vehicle.
Motorists on Arkansas roads often see the results of truck accidents. Some accidents are caused by driver negligence, such as speeding and fatigue. Others are the result of negligent truck maintenance.
Every year in Arkansas and around the country, people are injured in accidents involving large trucks carrying flammable materials. In some of those cases, the accidents happen when the truck rolls over. Across the nation, more than 1,300 cargo tanks roll over every year.
Motorists in Arkansas who are interested in improved safety on trucking routes may want to know more about the accident-prevention technology that has been introduced by a South Korean electronics company. Samsung has developed and tested what is being called a "safety truck" in Argentina, a country known for a high incidence of traffic accidents.
Semi-trailer trucks are a common sight on the roads of Arkansas, and motorists have good reason to be particularly vigilant in their vicinity. The thought of one of these large commercial vehicles traveling with a sleep-deprived driver behind the wheel is a terrifying one, but this is what may have caused a fatal accident in Georgia on May 19 according to authorities. A Georgia State Patrol representative said that the cause of the crash is still under investigation, but he added that a sleeping truck driver is one theory that was being considered.
Many Arkansas drivers may be familiar with large commercial trucks and tractor-trailers, which travel across the state's highways. While many of the individuals operating such vehicles are skilled, these larger vehicles can be more complicated to drive, and in many cases, mistakes that might be negligible to individuals driving smaller cars may cause serious accidents for truck drivers.
Drivers in Arkansas and throughout the country may have access to safer roads if some of the recommendations made for truck drivers by the National Transportation Safety Board are implemented. The NTSB says that despite its making more than 100 recommendations, highway regulators have failed to take steps to regulate truckers more tightly. With truck accidents on the rise and around 4,000 fatalities annually, the NTSB has issued a list of the improvements it would most like to see take place in 2015.
In Arkansas, large trucks account for a relatively high percentage of fatal accident involvement. Although the trucks accounted for only 4 percent of all registered vehicles and only 9 percent of all miles traveled nationwide in 2012, large trucks accounted for an astonishing 11.5 percent of the year's fatal crashes in Arkansas for the year.
People who drive on highways in Arkansas and around the country could be interested in some statistics regarding truck driver fatigue. Truck drivers who have been driving for too many hours, resulting in excessive tiredness, could be responsible for increased crash risks. Many of those accidents result in serous injuries or death, according to statistics compiled by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.