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Common causes of distractions for commercial truck drivers

On Behalf of | May 6, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Driving a commercial truck involves long hours on the road and requires a high level of concentration and skill. In New Jersey, truck drivers face numerous challenges that can lead to distractions, potentially increasing the risk of accidents.

Understanding these distractions is important for both truck drivers and the companies they work for, as it helps in implementing strategies to minimize their impact and enhance road safety.

Mobile device usage

One of the most significant sources of distraction for truck drivers comes from mobile devices. Making phone calls, texting, or using apps while driving can divert a driver’s attention away from the road. Despite laws restricting the use of handheld devices while driving, the temptation to use a smartphone can be a major distraction, especially during long, monotonous trips.

Navigation and vehicle systems

Modern trucks are equipped with advanced navigation systems and vehicle management tools. While these technologies are designed to assist drivers, interacting with these systems can sometimes distract them from driving. Setting GPS routes or adjusting vehicle settings while the truck is moving can take a driver’s eyes off the road and hands off the steering wheel, leading to dangerous situations.

External distractions

The roads in New Jersey are not just busy. They are also filled with billboards, construction sites, and frequent stops due to traffic lights and pedestrian crossings. These external factors can easily catch a driver’s attention and lead to momentary lapses in focus, which are critical when operating a large vehicle.

Fatigue and mental stress

Long driving hours can lead to fatigue, which significantly impairs a driver’s ability to concentrate. Mental stress, whether from personal issues or job-related pressures, can also distract a driver. Both fatigue and stress reduce reaction times and the overall alertness necessary for safe driving.

Commercial truck drivers in New Jersey must constantly be aware of these common distractions and take steps to mitigate their effects to help keep everyone on the road safe.