Connecticut truck drivers know that fatigue is a significant problem. In a survey, 86 percent of Americans polled believe increasing the time truckers are on the road is counterproductive, and 68 percent would be willing to spend more money for goods rather than see this happen.
Connecticut drivers are likely no strangers to congested highways and the large percentage of tractor trailers and other transport vehicles on the road. They may also be familiar with the frequency of truck accidents caused by truck driver fatigue. Many experts warn that driver fatigue as a contributing factor in an accident is largely underreported as truck drivers who have been involved in an accident likely don't want to say anything that may imply they are at fault. Still, though, driver fatigue - reported or not - is implicated in countless deadly crashes each year. In a devastating highway crash in 2009, a 76-year-old trucker hit slowed and stopped traffic, killing 10 people. Police believed he had fallen asleep behind the wheel.
Crashes involving commercial-sized vehicles continue to happen across the country, including on Connecticut highways, despite efforts to prevent them. Sadly, truck accidents can cause serious injuries or even death, due to the size and weight of the vehicles, which is why there are specific laws in place for drivers of these vehicles.
In a move designed to protect the public from accidents involving the trucking industry, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is emphasizing the importance of hours of service enforcement. A recent oversight hearing brought vehement opposition from lawmakers who seem focused on the economic wellbeing of the owners of trucking companies.