Common Signs of Truck Driver Fatigue to Be Aware Of

Posted on 10/15/22

in Car Accidents

Truck drivers have a lot of responsibility when behind the wheel and need to be alert at all times. Unfortunately, truck driver fatigue is a real problem and can lead to serious accidents. If you’ve been in an accident with a truck, there are certain signs that indicate the driver may have been fatigued. 

Signs of Truck Driver Fatigue

  1. Impaired judgment

One of the first signs of fatigue is impaired judgment. This can manifest in a number of ways, such as tailgating, making poor decisions when changing lanes, and failing to yield properly. If you see a truck driver exhibiting any of these behaviors, use caution and keep your distance if possible. 

  1. Sudden braking or swerving

Another sign of truck driver fatigue is sudden braking or swerving. This can be indicative of a driver who falls asleep at the wheel or who is otherwise not paying attention to the road. If you see a truck braking or swerving unexpectedly, give it plenty of space and do not attempt to pass it. 

  1. Slow reaction times

Fatigued drivers often have slow reaction times. This means that they may not brake in time to avoid an accident or may not be able to swerve out of the way of a sudden obstacle in the road. If you see a truck ahead of you whose driver appears to be having difficulty staying in their lane or keeping pace with traffic, it’s best to give them space. 

Causes of Truck Driver Fatigue

We’ve all been there before. You’re driving home from a long day at work, and all you can think about is crawling into bed and getting some rest. The next thing you know, your head is drooping and your eyelids are getting heavy. 

While most of us have experienced this feeling at one time or another, it’s important to remember that it can be much more than just a nuisance. For truck drivers who are responsible for hauling large loads across the country, fatigue can be a serious safety hazard. 

There are many different factors that can contribute to truck driver fatigue. Some of the most common include:

  • Driving for long hours: Truck drivers often have to drive for 10 hours or more at a time in order to make their delivery deadlines. This can lead to mental and physical fatigue. 
  • Working odd hours: Because they are responsible for making deliveries on time, truck drivers often have to work odd hours, including early mornings, late nights, and weekends. This can disrupt their natural sleep cycles and lead to fatigue. 
  • Sleeping in odd places: Truck drivers often have to sleep in their vehicles or in unfamiliar places, which can make it difficult to get a good night’s rest. 
  • Being isolated: Because they spend so much time on the road by themselves, truck drivers can sometimes feel isolated from the rest of the world. This isolation can lead to increased stress levels and ultimately fatigue. 

Accidents involving trucks can lead to serious injuries and even fatalities. If you’ve been in an accident with a truck, it’s important to be aware of the signs that indicate the driver may have been fatigued at the time, which could entitle you to monetary compensation. If you need help, contact us today to schedule a free consultation.