We often talk about the dangers of truck accidents and the many factors that can contribute to them, but you may not know that there is a federal program that is supposed to help minimize truck accidents through analysis and intervention. Thanks to an accident that occurred last year in Illinois, the inspector general of the Department of Transportation will be taking a closer look at just how effective this program is.
It all started in January 2014, when a fatigued truck driver was responsible for an accident in which one person was killed and another was injured. Emergency vehicles were stopped to assist another vehicle when the truck crashed into them. It was later discovered that the driver had violated requirements regarding hours of service, but the interesting thing is that the above mentioned federal program was supposed to investigate the carrier that was responsible for the crash. The investigation never occurred.
This lapse was noted by a report in the Chicago Tribune, which reportedly discovered other gaps in the program. Because of this, a United States senator requested that the program be audited, and recent news reports indicate that the federal program’s oversights will indeed be reviewed. This is good news for drivers in every state, including those in Oklahoma, who will hopefully be sharing the road with even safer trucks and truck drivers after the examination.
Of course any changes that the inspection would bring about are still quite a ways off, and it is entirely possible that the inspector general finds few or no oversights upon which the program can improve. However, fewer truck accidents would be a welcome change. Unfortunately, it is unfeasible to expect that truck accidents will disappear entirely, even if changes to the program are made. Because of this, it is still recommended that you drive safely around large trucks and meet with an attorney if you are ever involved in a truck accident.