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Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Alan J. Robertson with Sloan Firm.
If you find yourself sharing the road with an 18 wheeler exhibiting erratic and potentially dangerous behavior, what should you do? Should you report the driver? If so, to who? Should you wait until you arrive at your destination or pull off the road to call the police? These are common and reasonable questions, and knowing the answers can help keep others safe on the road as well as hold truck drivers and their companies accountable to follow safe driving practices.
First and foremost and regardless of whether an 18 wheeler is involved in the situation or not, if you witness an emergency situation on the road, pull over in a safe location and call the police to let them know where you are and what is happening.
This photo could capture valuable information, such as the make and model of the 18 wheeler, a phone number to report bad driving, and an image of the driver. If you cannot take a photo, make a note of the trucking company and any other identifying information on the vehicle.
Unless it is an emergency situation or you fear a collision is imminent, it is unnecessary to pull off the road during traffic to make a report. If a passenger is available to take a picture of the 18 wheeler, have them do so and keep this information in a safe place until you are able to stop and call the number of the trucking company to report the driver. It may also be helpful for your passenger to take a video of the truck if the driver’s erratic behavior is still evident. This can serve to hold the truck driver and/or company accountable in the case a collision does occur and they try to shift liability.
Even if you can’t remember the exact phone number or information on the back of the 18 wheeler, try to remember whatever you can about the way the truck looked, the time the erratic behavior was perpetrated, the company it belonged to, and the location where you were driving when you noticed the erratic behavior. This may be enough to call the trucking company and report the driver who was recorded in that vicinity at the time of behavior.
If you believe a trucking company is violating safety and traffic rules, you may file a report with your State Department of Transportation to request an investigation into the issue. Additionally, you can contact an attorney to seek legal counsel regarding any other steps you would like to take.
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Alan Robertson with the Sloan Law Firm.
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