The 18 wheeler accident at mile marker 858 that killed an Orange County couple in Rose City happened because the driver of the 18 wheeler failed to manage his speed and failed to maintain proper space management. Time may show several other factors that led to the failed space management and the failure to control speed, but there is no doubt that these two factors precipitated the impact between the 18 wheeler and the flat bed trailer followed by the 18 wheeler catapulting into the oncoming lane of traffic killing two innocent people.
While every driver has the same duties to control their speed and keep a proper distance from the vehicles in front of them, there are even more specific duties for 18 wheeler drivers. These additional duties include required knowledge.
Regarding “Speed Management”, all 18 wheeler drivers must know and follow the following:
(9) Speed management. The importance of understanding the effects of speed, including:
(i) Speed and stopping distance;
(ii) Speed and surface conditions;
(iii) Speed and the shape of the road;
(iv) Speed and visibility; and
(v) Speed and traffic flow.
FMCSA Section 383.111(9)
In addition, every 18 wheeler driver has to know and follow these “Space Management” procedures and techniques:
(10) Space management. The procedures and techniques for controlling the space around the vehicle, including:
(i) The importance of space management;
(ii) Space cushions, e.g., controlling space ahead/to the rear;
(iii) Space to the sides; and
(iv) Space for traffic gaps.
FMCSA Section 383.111(10)
Clearly these are just a few of the many requirements that a driver of an 18 wheeler truck must know and follow. It is plain to see that staying alert and awake at all times is imperative for every 18 wheeler driver for the safety of everyone on the roadways.