With truck accidents in Ohio and across the U.S., the circumstances that are specific to the accident are often the focus of the police investigation. This is particularly true when there are injuries and fatalities. In some instances, the truck driver may have had a variety of health problems that should have been addressed before he or she was allowed on the road. This can be important evidence when seeking compensation after an accident.
Research has found that drivers who have health problems are more likely to be in a truck accident. According to a study by the University of Utah, truckers who have at least three medical conditions are two to four times more likely to be in an accident in comparison to healthier drivers. While it can be difficult for truck drivers to be hyper-vigilant about such health factors as diet and exercise, the truck company should be cognizant of how an unhealthy trucker can place others at risk.
The examination of the medical records of nearly 50,000 truckers indicates that health issues can place them in several levels of danger. Thirty-four percent were found to have indicators of a minimum of one of multiple health problems that have historically been connected to driver ineffectiveness and danger. They are diabetes, lower back pain and heart disease. When their accident history was compared to their health statuses, those who had three conditions were in crashes more frequently.
The researcher who led the study stated that there has yet to be a standard method to look at truck drivers' health status and how any conditions might combine to make them riskier for an accident. Currently, truck drivers who have significant health problems are restricted from driving, but several minor health conditions are not considered in a similar manner.
Given the size and the speed at which trucks travel, those in other vehicles who are involved in an accident with a truck will likely have medical costs, hospital stays and problems that can be long lasting. When evidence is examined to determine the cause of a truck accident, the trucking log, smartphones and toxicology are taken into consideration without thinking about whether the driver had health issues that the truck company should have addressed. Every base must be covered when there is an accident. Victims and their families may want to discuss the matter with an attorney experienced in cases involving commercial trucks.
Source: gobytrucknews.com, "Study Shows Drivers With Multiple Medical Issues Higher Crash Risk," Feb. 15, 2017