The trucking life can be a hard one. Long hours of non-stop driving with little human interaction can take a serious toll.
As a result, there are rules regulating how truckers do their drives, including ones mandating breaks after set periods. However, truck drivers remain at risk of workplace injuries.
1. Traffic accident-related injuries
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, in 2020, the police received reports of approximately 415,000 wrecks involving large trucks. Truck drivers may sustain serious injuries in such accidents, including brain trauma and neck and spinal cord damage.
2. Sitting-related health issues
Recent emphasis on the importance of sitting less and standing or moving around more is not baseless. Sitting for extended problems has serious health implications. Truckers, who must stay in their seat for hours-long stretches, are at risk of developing back and neck pain and injuries. They are also vulnerable to long-term issues, such as a heightened chance of developing cardiovascular disease or diabetes later in life.
3. Non-driving-related problems
Truckers also find themselves exposed to dangers in areas like loading docks and warehouses. They may slip and fall, suffering sprains or pulling muscles, or become involved in heavy equipment accidents. Constant bending and lifting while loading cargo means they can also develop repetitive strain injuries.
Commercial truck operators often encounter problems with obtaining workers’ compensation. Some injuries and illnesses, such as long-term ones, may be difficult to connect back to their positions. Their employers also sometimes mistakenly classify them as independent contractors, rendering them ineligible for benefits. However, truck drivers injured in the course of or as a result of performing their duties may still be able to obtain their rightful workers’ compensation benefits. Contact a workers’ compensation professional to receive a free consultation — no obligations involved.