Cement truck accidents can impose serious hazards to the truck’s driver and anyone in nearby traffic. Unlike an accident involving small vehicles, individuals involved in this type of crash are more susceptible to critical injuries and even death.
They are easily susceptible to rolling over. On the road, a little known fact is that a cement truck can turn over while driving at as little as 5 mph while making a ninety degree turn. This may not be such a big deal, except that many cement truck drivers are in a hurry to reach their destination. This is because wet cement must be delivered quickly, so that it doesn’t harden within the cement truck itself.
Drivers need specific training. Cement truck drivers need a specific, Class A, license in order to operate a truck weighing 26,001 lbs or more. To obtain this license, the driver needs to pass the following tests:
- General Knowledge test
- Combinations vehicle test
- Air Brakes
- Basic Skills
- CDL Road Test
- Applicable exams for desired endorsements
If the driver is not exceptionally well-trained or disobeys any of the safety regulations learned in training, the chance of the cement truck rolling-over while turning is even greater.
Passenger vehicles don’t realize the consequences of their actions. The most common types of cement truck accidents involve direct collisions and rollovers. Many drivers don’t realize that a cement truck has a high center of gravity, therefore making it easily susceptible to rolling over with a sharp turn. Failure to obey the rules of the road, on the part of the passenger vehicle driver, can result in a direct collision with a cement truck or causing it to turn over.
Cement trucks are difficult to maneuver. Sometimes, a cement truck driver can drift into oncoming traffic and fail to see any obstacles in their line-of-vision. Due to its sheer size and momentum, it is then difficult for a cement truck driver to quickly maneuver the truck back into a safe zone before it strikes and severely injures anyone in oncoming traffic.
Cement truck drivers have a poor line of vision. Like highway trucks, cement trucks have blind spots that hide passenger vehicles. If you are sitting directly behind a cement truck, its mirrors cannot detect you. This is also true on an enclosed worksite, where a cement truck can accidentally back into construction workers if they are hidden within its blind spots.
Even when stopped, cement trucks are unstable. Although rare, a cement truck can impose severe danger to construction workers if any part of its machinery malfunctions. This may be due to operator inexperience or intoxication as well as a defect in the design of the machine.