Avoid the big trucks


Well-Known Member
May 26, 2015
This is the advice for cyclists in Metro Manila roads. Almost every day, there is an accident report that a truck had caused a collision due to lost brakes. I am wondering why those trucks are experiencing such a problem every day. Is there something wrong with the brake system of big trucks? In one accident report, a bike rider was thrown out from the road when he was hit by a wayward truck. Again, that’s due to loss of brakes. Anyway, if you are a rider, just avoid moving beside the truck lane if you want to be safe on the road.
I doubt that the Philippines has the required annual safety inspections, and the additional surprise safety inspections throughout the year that the US has, in fact most countries don't have anywhere near the safety inspections that the US has. In addition to that commercial drivers are required to do their own safety inspection before and after each day they drive...of course I'm sure many cheat that system because there is no one watching them to make sure it's done, but the honest drivers do it, and all commercial drivers have to log that they took 15 minutes to pre and 15 min to post trip their vehicle, and the log can a lot of the times alert authorities if the driver actually did the pre and post trips, especially now since most trucks have gone to the electronic log.

So yes if a country doesn't have much in the way of safety inspections and the driver isn't held accountable to doing it then yes there will be accidents. But you see in the US truck companies are held responsible if say a brake failed and they crashed and killed someone, and it comes out that the brakes were obviously in bad repair before going out, and a lawsuit could go into the millions of dollars.

So when it comes to commercial vehicles the US does have that area right, although I still think a driver is allowed to drive too long, they can drive up to 11 hours and be doing work related duties for another 3 hours on top of that, 14 hour day is a long day, and then only be given a 10 hours of rest before they have to hit the road again.

Personally I think a truck driver should be limited to 8 hours of driving time and 3 hours of other work related tasks, and then be given 13 hours of down time; but the US lacks drivers so if they shorten the drive hours and lengthen the down time they would need even more drivers and we can't get enough now to fill the shortage of 50,000 drivers that are needed. The pay is good for a truck driver too, but who wants to work like that? Who wants to be home for only 32 hours for their "weekend"? assuming they get home, most don't! Who wants to spend their nights or days depending on their driving log schedule, and their 32 hour weekend in a truck stop? then there is the team drivers who are constantly moving, only stopping to get fuel and to eat, one sleeps while the other drives, that would drive me crazy! No amount of money in the world would make me do that!! On top of that truck driving is in the top 10 most dangerous occupations in America.

In America it isn't so much that trucks are unsafe and having accidents due to equipment failure as much as it is that the drivers are unsafe and causing the accidents. But having said that, about 75% of truck drivers are better drivers than 75% of the automobile drivers; so as a whole the truck driver is a better driver overall, it's just that when one does makes a mistake it can be very deadly.

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