Besides following too closely, speeding, and using a handheld device, we’ve put together a list of the top 5 scenarios where truck drivers get pulled over. While not every violation results in a citation, truck drivers who commit these behaviors are at high risk for getting pulled over and receiving violation warnings, which will likely be evaluated in the FMCSA’s safety systems.
1. Not Staying In Your Own Lane
Because, let’s face it, the first thing a state trooper is going to question when a truck driver is severely deviating out of his lane is whether or not he is fatigued or impaired in any way. We understand that not all lane deviations are deemed dangerous or against the law, but those that are make it very easy for a trooper to feel justified in pulling you over. Officers who observe the deviation as not simply a result of strong winds or abnormal road conditions often examine possible impairment or other driver distractions like onboard electronics, cell phones, and the like. Either way, no driver wants to get pulled over and have their driving competence questioned or their freight delayed.
2. Delayed Reaction Times
Nothing says distracted driving more than a truck that approaches traffic stop lights or lane closures at high speeds -- with no signs of slowing down. When the truck driver finally reacts and takes the proper crash avoidance actions, they have demonstrated to officers that they are a clear threat to themselves and others on the road. You can bet you’ll be pulled over and cited for this truck driver infraction.
3. Subpar Load Securement
When your load is on the flatbed, it’s in plain view for the whole world to see. The methods you used to secure the load, the tools and devices you used, and the general condition and quality of your work can be easily observed by officers. Think you’re off the hook if you’ve got an enclosed trailer? Think again. Your load will still be checked during an inspection. Just remember that one of the main culprits of rollovers is large, heavy cargo that slides from side to side when a driver fails to secure them down properly.
4. Overweight Loads
This particular violation is hard to escape especially with the increased use of virtual weigh-in-motion systems. These systems are extremely efficient at rapidly screening large numbers of commercial vehicles and singling out violators who haven’t yet taken proactive measures with ensuring load and weight compliance.
5. Not Obeying Traffic Signs
You would think all truck drivers would read simple road and traffic signs to avoid trouble. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. For example, misreading a bridge height sign can quickly result in a particularly bad bridge strike that damages not only the bridge, but also the truck and possibly it’s load.
Be sure to check out our blog for more trucking industry news and trends from the team at Thunder Funding!