Commercial truck crashes are more common in rural areas than in urban settings, and several factors contribute to this trend. To enhance safety in rural areas, fleet owners and transportation officials must better understand these factors and what they might do to reduce risks.
Furthermore, drivers must exercise caution and adapt their driving behavior when traveling through less-populated areas to lower their risk of involvement in truck wrecks.
Rural areas often have longer distances between towns and cities. Commercial truck drivers traveling through these areas must navigate highways and roads that may have limited infrastructure, leading to increased wear and tear on trucks and a greater risk of accidents.
Limited access to services
There are also typically fewer rest stops, repair facilities and emergency services in rural areas than urban ones. This lack of support can be especially challenging for commercial truck drivers who rely on these amenities during long hauls.
Higher speed limits
Many rural highways have higher speed limits than urban roads. This can lead to increased risks, as higher speeds reduce driver reaction time. Commercial trucks traveling at higher speeds require more distance to stop safely, increasing the chances of collisions.
Lack of traffic management
There may also be fewer traffic lights, signs and lane markings in sparsely populated areas, making it more challenging for truck drivers to navigate intersections and roadways safely.
Adverse weather conditions
Rural areas are also more susceptible to adverse weather conditions such as heavy snow, ice and fog. These weather challenges can reduce visibility and road traction, increasing the likelihood of truck accidents.
According to Forbes, 55% of America’s fatal truck crashes occur in rural areas. This suggests that rural communities must do more to raise awareness among motorists about the risks of sharing the road with commercial trucks.