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3 big distractions that cause truck accidents

A truck driver spends so many hours, days, weeks and years behind the wheel of his or her vehicle that eventually the truck driver becomes almost too confident in how easy it is to drive it. This is when distracted driving can become a problem as the over-confident driver takes risks by eating food, texting with friends and engaging in other activities that no one should think about doing while operating big rig.

Let's take a look at some of the most common distracted driving mistakes truck drivers make:

-- Many truck drivers fall prey to distractions inside their truck cab. These include talking to passengers, eating food, using the radio, trying to use dispatching devices, scolding a pet that is riding with the driver and more. Believe it or not, some drivers become so over-confident that they read books and magazines while on the road.

-- Cellphones and smart phones are serious in-cabin distractions that deserve their own section. Indeed, updating social media accounts, texting, surfing the web, dialing numbers and talking on the phone are dangerous activities that cause a driver to lose his or her concentration, and take his or her eyes off the surrounding road and vehicles.

-- Truck drivers can also be distracted by things outside their truck cabins, like looking at buildings, reading billboards or watching a person or pedestrian. Anything that takes one's eyes off the road is a distraction in this regard.

Unfortunately, it's not enough to make distracted driving unlawful to prevent this kind of behavior. New Jersey residents harmed by distracted truck drivers also need to assert their legal rights in court and hold truck drivers responsible and accountable for their actions to send a stern message that we -- as a community -- will not put up with this kind of dangerous behavior and there will be consequences.

Source: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, "CMV Driving Tips - Driver Distraction," accessed Sep. 19, 2016

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