It’s no news that texting while driving is dangerous. Many states ban texting and driving. For instance, Pennsylvania law prohibits texting while driving. So does New Jersey, except that New Jersey has gone one step further and banned all use of cell phones, including talking and texting. However, the laws are not broad enough to cover use of a computer by a truck driver. Many laws prohibit use of “hand-held” communication devices. Computers are obviously not hand-held.
The reality is that many trucking companies have installed computers in the cabs of their trucks. The idea is that computers help drivers stay on course and schedule. They can be in contact, via computer, with company dispatchers. Computers may be located next to the steering wheel.
The problem with using computers in truck cabs is the same problem with texting on a cell phone and driving – the driver’s eyes and attention are diverted from the road. This is why computer use while driving should be banned in the trucking industry. In addition, trucks are especially dangerous, given their size and weight. Most highway truck accidents end in fatalities or at least, very serious injuries.
There is another reason why the trucking industry should be banned from allowing drivers to use computers in their truck cabs. It is related to the risk posed by truck accidents, and that is, the prevalence of drug use/stimulants of truck drivers. According to a 1990 National Transportation Safety Board study, Fatigue, Alcohol, Other Drugs, and Medical Factors in Fatal-to-the Driver Heavy Truck Crashes, 33% of fatally injured drivers tested positive for drugs/alcohol.
Coupled with issues of drug/alcohol abuse, use of computers in truck cabs is particularly problematic for truck drivers, especially considering the sheer size and weight of commercial trucks. The great risk posed by truck accidents outweighs the benefit of having computers in truck cabs.
The Federal Highway Safety Administration, which has the power and authority to regulate the trucking industry, should ban computers in truck cabs. Computers simply aren’t needed to ensure timely delivery. Tracking devices and two-way radios can accomplish the same task without adding to the risk of truck accidents.
- Truck Driving and Use of Computers in the Cab
- Truck Driving & Texting – A Very Serious Danger
- Proving Intoxication in a Pennsylvania Truck Accident
Pennsylvania Truck Accident Lawyer
For more information, contact our Pennsylvania car and truck accident lawyers.
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