After yet another fatal trucking accident, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has decided to make another recommendation for commercial truck drivers to be banned from using a cell phone or any hands-free device while driving. The most recent accident took the lives of 11 people and destroyed some shops off Interstate 65 in Kentucky. The driver’s phone records reveal that he was making phone calls and sending text messages just seconds before the fatal accident, according to Reuters.
In 2009, there were more than 100 large trucks involved in fatal trucking accidents in Indiana. Many of these accidents could have been prevented if there were more restrictive laws regulating driver distractions. These types of accidents are in fact preventable.
Our Highland trucking accident attorneys understand that mixing a distracted driver and a 40-ton commercial vehicle is a recipe for disaster. Often, these types of accidents turn deadly and cause serious property damage. With current laws and enforcement efforts, too many drivers are continuing to drive while engaging in a number of distractions on our roadways. Until more comprehensive regulations are enacted, motorists will unfortunately continue to suffer in these accidents.
“Distracted driving is becoming increasingly prevalent, exacerbating the danger we encounter daily on our roadways,” said Deborah Hersman, chairman of the NTSB, according to Reuters.
According to the phone records of the commercial trucker who was heading down the Kentucky interstate, he made four calls within the minute before the accident. He also made nearly 70 phone calls and text messages within the 24 hours leading up to the accident.
The new recommendation from the NTSB supplements a proposal from federal officials. There have been previous suggestions of a complete ban on the use of all hand-held phones by commercial trucks and drivers of buses.
“This is the most comprehensive recommendation we’ve made,” said Hersman.
The NTSB doesn’t have the authority to make a proposal a law. The Board does have high expectations though. The recommendation has been sent over to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Previous recommendations have been transformed into laws in the past. The NTSB is using this platform as a catalyst.
Support for this type of ban is universal but authorities are having a hard time figuring out who’s best to enforce it. If the proposal takes effect, lawmakers in every state would have to take action to help hold up its end of the bargain, according to FOX News.
“It’s going to be pretty difficult politically to get that kind of law through a state,” said spokesman for the Governors Highway Safety Association, Jonathan Adkins, according to FOX News.
As of now, there are more than 30 states that prohibit commercial truck drivers from texting behind the wheel. That means that the 2.8 million commercial truck drivers who were recorded in the U.S. in 2008 must pull over and park before sending a text. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case and that’s how people get killed.
If you or a loved one has been in a trucking accident, call Burton Padove for a free consultation to learn about how to ensure receipt for financial compensation for injuries you or others sustain at 219-836-2200 or 877-446-5294 for nationwide callers.
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