Nodding off behind the wheel of a vehicle is often the cause of big rig accidents

Eighteen-wheeler accidents happen every day and cost thousands of lives. Many of them are the result of driver fatigue – or are they? There is an interesting report out by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) which shows that may not always be the case. Even though the motoring public perceives trucker fatigue as being the cause of collisions, a recent study shows that on average, four-wheel drivers are more fatigued than commercial truckers.

The study also suggests that the vast majority of big rig accidents happen because of poor decisions made by four-wheel drivers, such as tailgating, stopping abruptly in front of a large truck or driving too fast for existing road conditions.

Despite the fact that 18-wheeler accidents do happen on a regular basis, it appears their overall numbers are decreasing. In 2010 there were 3,484 fatal truck accidents, but that represented a 25 percent drop between 2007 and 2010.