Logging is a hugely important American industry that is highly dangerous from start to finish. Everyone involved in the process of moving this natural resource from its source to the consumer experiences some significant hazards — including the truckers who are in charge of transporting logs from one place to another.
In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, logging and truck driving combine two of the deadliest occupations in the nation.
Why do logging trucks present such a significant danger for everyone on the road?
- The ordinary hazards of the trucking industry, from distracted driving, driver fatigue and speeding, are just as common in this industry as any other.
- It’s difficult to properly balance a load of logs. An unbalanced load can abruptly shift, causing a truck to jackknife or rollover.
- A single weak link in the chain used to secure large logs, piled high in a truck for transport, can break and cause death and disaster.
- The overhang from long tree trunks can present a serious hazard to other drivers, especially if the trunks aren’t properly flagged in warning.
Passenger car drivers are especially at risk during early morning and evening hours, when there’s less light and it’s harder for the brain to gauge distances. That overhang behind a logging truck can range up to 12 feet. While the log hanging furthest out is supposed to be red flagged during the day and fixed with a red flashing light after dark to give drivers warning, that doesn’t always happen.
Drivers in passenger cars are also at serious risk of a crush injury if a load of logs comes loose during transport and topples. That’s why drivers are always urged to give logging trucks a lot of room. Steering clear is the best thing you can do for your own safety.
Were you injured due to a logging truck accident? Was a loved one killed in an encounter with a logging truck? If so, find out more about your legal right to compensation.