Suffering a serious medical condition while driving can be dangerous for any motorist, but when you're a trucker operating a massive 80,000 pound machine, a medical emergency can have serious effects not just on your safety, but for the safety of other motorists on the highway. A truck driver conference earlier this month brought attention to the specific health and medical challenges facing the trucker population in the country.
The International Conference on Commercial Driver Health and Wellness was sponsored by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Transportation Research Board, and held in Baltimore between November 8 and 10, 2010. The conference had three parts:
- Identifying the most serious risks to the health of commercial truck drivers
- Focusing on employer issues in establishing health and wellness programs for their employees
- Analysis of the return on investment from implementing driver health and wellness programs
It makes sense for the trucking industry to invest in programs that keep truckers healthy and prevent the possibility of accidents. When there is a serious or fatal accident involving a driver who suffers from sleep apnea, or has a heart attack or any other medical condition while driving, the trucking company can find itself liable for any losses or damages that result from the accident.
Besides, the trucker population is more susceptible to lifestyle-related illnesses like diabetes, hypertension, stroke, cardiac arrest and other cardiovascular health problems. These conditions can increase the risks of a driver suffering a medical emergency at the wheel, with devastating consequences. Ultimately, investment in trucker health programs not just enhances employee wellness, but also has financial benefits for trucking companies.Jason Schultz is a Coweta County Truck Accident Attorney, helping victims injured in truck accidents recover compensation for their losses.