Because of its enormous size and weight, a semi truck can cause a devastating truck accident that may injure and kill motorists. Truck drivers too, don’t always come out of these accidents unscathed. Semi truck accidents have caused serious injuries and fatalities to truck drivers. This is why the truck driver’s pre-trip inspection of her rig is so important, and is why it’s required by law.
Because of the many trips truckers make in their careers, the pre-trip inspection becomes very routine, and the temptation exists for truckers to cut corners and leave out important checks. Here are three common inspection omissions:
Tire Tread Check
Tire treads usually don’t change much from day to day. This will cause some drivers to stop checking after many days of seeing no change. However, allowing months to go by without checking means that the trucker will at some point be driving on tires with unsafe tread. Additionally, tire and tread damage can occur over the course of a single day should the truck run over nails or over large road debris.
Tire Pressure Check
The most common cause of tire blowouts is chronic under inflation of tires. Under inflation causes the sidewalls to flex excessively. This both heats and mechanically stresses the tire side walls and belting. Such a tire is a blowout waiting to happen. When you include the effects of heated pavement on a hot summer day, the risk of a blowout is high. Air slowly leaks out of all tires, and it’s just a matter of time when unchecked tires become under inflated.
From the driver’s point of view, trailer reflectors don’t directly impact his driving in any way. If he isn’t safety focused, reflectors may get omitted from the pre-trip inspection in order to save some time. However, these safety devices prevent rear and side collisions into the trailer by other vehicles. Missing or dirt covered reflectors make the trailer invisible to motorists at night, and is the reason for many underride accidents. An underride accident occurs when a car drives into the side or rear of the trailer. It sometimes shears off the top half of the car.
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