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Is the poor health of truck drivers putting you at risk?

| Apr 8, 2021 | car accidents

Tractor-trailers are common on roadways in Asheville and around North Carolina. When approaching or passing one, you must respect the driver’s blind spots. After all, the sheer size of commercial vehicles, which may weigh as much as 80,000 pounds, often makes them deadly in collisions with ordinary cars.

Professional truck drivers receive comprehensive training and must carry a special driver’s license. While you may be able to trust truckers to obey the rules of the road, their poor health may put your life in jeopardy.

Smoking

Even though many truck drivers are perfectly healthy, others have habits that may make them unsafe. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, truckers are twice as likely to smoke cigarettes than other drivers. Smoking, of course, may lead to cancer, heart disease, respiratory ailments and other illnesses.

Obesity

Just as truckers are twice as likely to smoke, they are also twice as likely to be overweight or obese. This is likely due to both the long hours professional drivers spend behind the wheel and a lack of healthy food options. Still, if drivers are obese, they may be susceptible to hypertension, heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

Drowsiness

If truckers do not engage in physical activity, they may have trouble sleeping. The same may be true for overweight drivers. Unfortunately, drowsy driving is often just as dangerous as drunk or distracted driving. Even worse, professional drivers may use stimulants to stay awake, potentially causing them to not realize they are too sleepy to drive safely.

While most truckers take their personal health and the safety of others seriously, it is possible a trucker’s poor health may cause you to suffer a life-altering injury. Fortunately, to help you cope with your recovery, you may be able to pursue financial compensation from the driver or the trucking company.