Since travel between Canada and the United States was limited in late March to essential border crossings, commercial vehicle traffic is picking up again. Reportedly, big rig traffic from the border into British Columbia and other Canadian provinces dropped by about 22% to almost 86,000 trucks in the last week of May, compared to the same period in 2019. As commercial traffic picks up again, cross-border personal injury risks will also increase.
A significant increase since Memorial Day weekend might indicate the slow return to previous numbers of big rigs crossing the border. However, authorities expect the trucking industry to remain challenged for an extended period. The situation creates more dangers because many truckers face financial challenges due to the limited opportunities during these times.
Commercial truck operators face a variety of injury hazards, many of which involve road accidents. Many truckers are paid per kilometre or by trip, and their rush to complete more kilometres or trips might cause them to become fatigued or less alert. Freight companies say many of the current trips involve hauling empty trailers in one direction. Sending an empty truck to collect a load, or returning with an empty vehicle after delivering cargo impacts the bottom line of the business significantly.
Driver fatigue is one of the top causes of truck accidents, and when drivers are injured on the other side of the border, recovering damages could be complicated. This is where the skills of an experienced cross-border personal injury lawyer can be crucial. A lawyer who is registered in British Columbia and Washington state can navigate legal proceedings and insurance claims for injured drivers who travelled from or to the United States.