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Even attentive truckers can be blind to hazards around them

| Mar 17, 2019 | Firm News

As a Georgia motorist, you have shared the road with large trucks and various types of semitrailers. You understand the importance of these types of vehicles for the American economy, but you are also probably aware of how dangerous they can be when truckers are not attentive or drive recklessly. Due to their large size and heavy weight, these vehicles can cause excessive damage when involved in a crash.

Truckers have a special responsibility to drive safely and cautiously. While things like distracted driving, speeding and fatigue can greatly increase the chance of a truck accident, even attentive truck drivers may fail to recognize hazards that are all around them. This is due to something called attentional blindness.

Seeing without really seeing

There are things to see and process going on all around you at any given time, especially when a person is driving. The brain cannot possibly accurately assess all of the information the eyes are capable of seeing at once, which means there are things that a person can see without really noticing them. For example, a trucker may be looking at the road with both hands on the wheel but still fail to see brake lights ahead or a swerving driver in the vehicle in the next lane.

All humans experience attentional blindness, which is why it is critically important for people to put down their phones and focus as much as possible when they are behind the wheel. While it is impossible to prevent it altogether, there are things that experienced truck drivers can do to make the roads safer and reduce their chance of an accident, including:

  • Truckers should strive to notice what is going on all around, including other drivers near the truck. Truckers should try and spot potential distracted driving and leave plenty of space for other drivers.
  • Truckers should do everything possible to eliminate distractions by putting down their phones, refrain from adjusting the radio as much as possible and train themselves to focus on the road.
  • Truck drivers should spot hazards and other important indicators of speed and caution, such as construction zones, road signs and heavy traffic up ahead.

Even one moment of distraction or one missed hazard can result in an accident that can change a person’s life. If you are the victim of a truck accident caused by attentional blindness, distraction, recklessness or other reason, it may be beneficial for you to explore the possibility of legal recourse. You could have a valid claim to financial compensation through a civil claim.