As we mentioned in our last post, lawmakers in both houses of Congress are currently considering a measure that would increase the minimum length requirements for semi-trucks hauling double-trailers. The proposal, which is largely supported by Republicans, has been criticized by safety advocates, who say that increasing the length of trailing units will increase the incidence of highway accidents due to increased trailer weights and bigger blind spots.
The trucking industry, however, has argued that increasing trailer lengths is necessary because of the inefficiency in the current system. Often, say industry representatives, truckers max out their storage space before hitting their weight limit, meaning more trips are required to haul cargo. Allowing longer trailers, it is argued, would help ensure that load weights are maximized, which would save trucking companies time and money.
The issue of safety is an understandable concern, but it isn’t necessarily a straightforward issue, because the increased and increasing use of online shopping has meant more work for shipping companies, which has lead to increased highway congestion and therefore increased risk of truck accidents. Addressing the problem is not necessarily going to be an easy task.
However the issue gets resolved at the federal level, it is important that drivers understand they have the right to be adequately compensated when they are injured by a negligent truck driver. Whether the negligence stems from violation of federal safety rules or just unsafe driving, truck accident victims should work with an experienced attorney to make sure they build the best case possible.