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How Inadequate Training Contributes to Truck Accidents

Individuals who operate large commercial trucks must have the proper training to do so safely. This involves much more than a person simply obtaining a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Commercial trucks are crucial to the continued success of the US economy, but improperly trained drivers can cause significant injuries and property damage. If you have been hurt in a collision, reach out to a Houston truck accident attorney for assistance with your case.

Inadequate Driver Training

What Do Truck Drivers Need to Operate in Texas?

In Texas, the requirements for operating a commercial truck are stringent due to the potential dangers associated with large vehicle operations. To legally drive a commercial truck, individuals must first obtain a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) from the Texas Department of Public Safety. The process involves passing both a knowledge test and a driving skills test, which assesses a driver’s ability to handle large vehicles under various conditions.

However, obtaining a CDL is just the beginning. Drivers must also understand and comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations, covering aspects such as service hours, vehicle maintenance, and cargo securement. Additionally, specific endorsements are needed for operating certain types of trucks or transporting hazardous materials, each requiring additional testing and certification.

Despite these requirements, the basic CDL training does not cover all practical skills and knowledge needed for safe driving. This gap often leads to the necessity of additional training provided by employers.

Companies Should Provide Further Training for New Drivers

While the CDL certifies a basic level of proficiency, it does not ensure that a driver is fully prepared for all the challenges of commercial truck driving. Recognizing this, many responsible trucking companies invest in further training for their new drivers. This additional training typically includes:

  • Advanced driving techniques, such as tactical defensive driving and strategies for handling adverse weather conditions.
  • Route planning and management to help drivers navigate efficiently while respecting hours-of-service regulations and avoiding fatigue.
  • Vehicle-specific training that covers the particular characteristics and requirements of different types of commercial trucks.
  • Safety protocols for emergency situations, including accident response and hazard recognition.

Ongoing training and refresher courses (particularly for any ongoing employee issues) are also crucial to help experienced drivers maintain their skills and adapt to new regulations or technologies. Companies that skimp on this further training risk having drivers who are technically licensed but not fully equipped to handle the complexities of modern truck driving.

The Dangers of Inadequate Training

Inadequate training can lead to serious consequences on the roads. Drivers who lack the necessary skills and knowledge are more likely to be involved in accidents due to several factors:

  • Poor handling of vehicle dynamics, which can lead to rollovers or loss of control, especially under challenging conditions like high winds or slick roads.
  • Inability to react appropriately to road emergencies, such as sudden traffic stops, obstacles on the road, or vehicle malfunctions.
  • Fatigue from improper hours-of-service management, which impairs a driver’s reaction time and judgment.
  • Inadequate knowledge of how to secure loads properly, resulting in shifting cargo that can cause the truck to become unstable.

A Truck Accident Lawyer Can Step in on Your Behalf

If you or somebody you care about has sustained a serious injury in an accident caused by an inadequately trained truck driver, please reach out to an attorney today. A truck accident lawyer can offer a free consultation to help you determine the next steps moving forward. You may be able to recover significant compensation to pay for your medical expenses, pain and suffering damages, any lost wages, property damage expenses, and more.

These claims can get challenging, and they can leave victims going up against larger companies and insurance carriers. When you have a truck collision attorney by your side, you will have an advocate ready to match these other parties on your behalf.

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