We’ve all seen those dangerous drivers on the road who swerve or speed recklessly.
Most of us try to find a way to get away from them, whether it’s finding another route, getting ahead, or staying well behind the offender. We’d love to report them, but we convince ourselves that by the time law enforcement could get the message, the other vehicle would be long gone.
But when the reckless driver is behind the wheel of a delivery truck, the potential dangers magnify. A trucking accident, especially if it’s a semi-truck, usually results in catastrophic damage. By taking charge of the situation, you could save lives.
1. Call 911 If It’s an Emergency
Someone is killed in a large truck accident every 15 minutes. That’s 96 fatalities every day. Many of these deaths could have been avoided.
If you see a truck driver acting erratically, they’re putting everyone else on the road at risk. Some examples of terrifying delivery driver behavior include speeding down steep inclines, changing lines without regard for other traffic, or pulling out in front of cars without slowing down.
In short, if the driver’s actions make you fear for your safety and that of the rest of the vehicles on the road, it’s an emergency. You should report it by calling 911 (or the local emergency hotline).
However, if it’s serious but not urgent, use one or more of the following methods to handle a reckless truck driver.
2. Look for the Company’s Number
Many large trucking companies post stickers that ask, “How’s my driving?” They list a phone number and the truck’s identification code.
Have your passenger dial the number or voice dial it with your Bluetooth. To be a safe driver yourself, find a way to remember the numbers and pull over to make the call.
Give a report to the person who answers and let them know what reckless behaviors their representative was doing behind the wheel.
3. Contact the FMCSA
Certain situations are managed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This branch of the federal government regulates commercial drivers on interstate highways.
When you see a delivery truck driver engaging in unsafe behaviors, contact the FMCSA and file a complaint. You can do this through a phone call, an email, or an online chat. Phone reports should be made to the Department of Transportation’s Complaint Hotline at 1-888-DOT-SAFT (1-888-368-7238).
4. Contact the Company Online
If there isn’t a “How’s my driving” sticker, there’s still a company listed on the truck somewhere. Write the license plate of the truck or other identification number, then find the company’s contact info online.
Most companies have an email listed, a social media account, or other ways you can message them. Try to find the safety manager’s direct contact information, so you know your report is getting into the right hands.
In your message, be clear about where you were when you saw the company’s representative engaging in reckless behavior and what they did to cause you to complain.
Keep in mind that it’s not uncommon for people to report an occasional accidental swerve or one-off mistake as dangerous behavior. Unless you have details that show the driver consistently making poor driving choices, your message is likely to be ignored.
However, multiple complaints about the same driver show patterns, and you could be the final straw that shows a company there’s a serious problem they need to handle immediately.
Truck drivers know that they have a substantial responsibility when they get behind the wheel of their vehicle. Operating heavy machinery is a dangerous job, and the potential for severe consequences is made clear to drivers as they go through training for their large truck license.
Because trucks are so heavy, it takes time to stop them. Drivers must be aware and alert to their surroundings at all times and follow the safety rules of the road.
Everyone is in danger if one person behind the wheel is distracted, but the potential damages skyrocket with a large truck involved. When it comes to reckless delivery truck drivers, if you see something, say something. You might save a life.