Have there been more crashes of late involving tractor trailers, like the big tanker fire along Interstate 81 last May?
Or is it just that those are bigger in magnitude and get more coverage?
There are those who feel there are indeed more crashes and wonder if driver fatigue may be the reason.
Long-distance drivers have their sleeper cabs, but it’s not always easy to just pull over and go to bed.
“A lot of times when you get to the truck stop nowadays, they don’t have enough parking spaces,” said Stanley Holt of Hamilton, Georgia, who was nice enough to talk to us when he stopped at the Manada Hill rest stop on I-81 southbound. “There was a time when you could basically park in the Walmart parking lots or even on the ramps. A lot of states have cut that out, basically, now.”
We asked driver Bill Stanley of Ocala, Florida – who was also very gracious with his time at the same rest stop – whether or not he thought fatigue was the biggest reason behind truck accidents. He doesn’t think so. He says inexperience is the culprit.
“Today they put these boys through truck-driving school, 16 days they give them a drivers license,” he said. “They put them out in a truck, 80,000 pounds going down the road. They have no clue what they’re doing. That’s why we have so many wrecks.”