While some of the semi-trucks that fill California’s roadways are local, many others come from far away. Consequently, when you pass a commercial truck, you may not know whether its driver has been on the road for five minutes, five hours, five days or five weeks.
Over-the-road trucking, which requires drivers to spend nights away from home, is not for everyone. After all, the countless hours truckers are behind the wheel can be exceedingly boring. Even though you may not think much about a trucker’s mental well-being, boredom can contribute to catastrophic accidents.
According to reporting from Heavy Duty Trucking, seriously distracted truck drivers are more than 70% more likely to have an accident than other truckers. While there are many reasons a trucker may have distractions, boredom can cause professional drivers to reach for their smartphones, fiddle with their radios or engage in other distracting behaviors.
There is a close link between boredom and fatigue. Even if a driver gets enough sleep before hitting the road, boredom may cause him or her to become drowsy. Drowsy truckers, of course, present an immediate risk to the driving public, as they often have reduced reaction times.
Most professional truckers recognize the importance of following the rules of the road, company policies and other regulations. Boredom may tempt truckers into taking unacceptable risks, however. Because tractor-trailers weigh several tons more than other vehicles on the road, risk-taking can quickly turn deadly.
You probably can do little to prevent trucker boredom. Ultimately, though, if you suffer a major injury in a collision with a bored driver, you may have grounds to pursue significant financial compensation.