Distracted driving is a very real concern for everyone on the road, from pedestrians to commercial drivers. Anyone can choose to look at a mobile phone instead of the road, and that can create a lot of risk for the general public.
Illinois state law prohibits drivers from manually handling cellphones at the wheel. Drivers can face tickets for holding a cellphone while they are talking to someone else or for sending text messages while driving. These laws aim to deter people on Illinois roadways from indulging in dangerous distractions.
Distraction caused by mobile devices is dangerous for anyone, especially those in control of commercial vehicles. Commercial truck drivers are subject to the same state laws as those who drive passenger vehicles when it comes to texting.
Additionally, there are federal regulations aimed at preventing digital distraction for commercial drivers. Unfortunately, many commercial truck drivers still choose to drive distracted despite the laws.
Commercial driving creates a lot of temptation for distraction
Working as a commercial driver means performing a monotonous task day in and day out. If you find your hour-long commute to work dull, imagine driving for between eight and 12 hours a day. Exhaustion is one factor that can contribute to commercial truck crashes.
Road hypnosis, which is where the monotonous sights and sound of the road lull a driver to sleep, can become a serious concern when you drive for such long hours. Working longer shifts can also lead to feelings of loneliness and social isolation. Commercial drivers may use their mobile devices as a means of staving off loneliness and exhaustion.
Unfortunately, choosing to focus mental energy on a phone instead of the road can increase the risk of a crash significantly, because it takes longer to stop and turn large trucks. Commercial drivers who text at the wheel could end up causing an accident that results in catastrophic injuries for the people in the smaller vehicles.
Those injured by commercial drivers have legal rights
Getting into any kind of collision in a motor vehicle is dangerous, but commercial vehicle collisions present higher levels of risk. The larger size and heavier weight of commercial vehicles makes it more likely for the smaller passenger vehicles to sustain massive damages. The people inside those passenger vehicles can suffer severe injuries, some of which could prove fail.
When distraction or other forms of negligence directly contribute to a crash that causes injuries or death, the victims of the crash may have the right to seek compensation from the driver of the commercial vehicle or their employer. It may be wise to look into your options after a crash to see if a lawsuit is a viable option.