When two trucks collide, it can cause some of the most severe injuries and even deaths of any kind of car crash. Since truck drivers are often under intense pressure to meet tight deadlines and log long hours behind the wheel, exhaustion is a major factor in these types of accidents. In order for truck accident lawyer, address this issue, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration enacted guidelines restricting the number of consecutive hours a truck driver can be on the road before taking a rest. The lives of other motorists are put at jeopardy, however, because many truck drivers choose to ignore these rules.
Rules Regarding “Hours Of Service”?
It is more probable for truck drivers to become weary while behind the wheel than it is for other drivers since truck drivers often work longer hours and drive larger distances than other drivers. As a response to these risks, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration created a set of regulations that all commercial truck drivers are required to adhere to.
- When you get back to work after a break of ten hours, you are only allowed to drive for another eleven;
- After you have reported for duty, you should wait at least 14 hours before operating a motor vehicle;
- You are required to pull over for a break of half an hour every eight hours that you drive;
- In any given work week, you are not allowed to log more than 60 hours of driving time (or 70 hours in an 8-day work week); and
- You are required to take a break of at least 34 consecutive hours once every seven or eight days.
Many drivers choose to violate these regulations, and some may even falsify their log books to hide violations of service requirements, even though they are in place to protect the safety of all trucking companies and their employees. There are a number of instances in which employers either actively encourage or urge their staff members to break the law, or indirectly promote it by maintaining standards that are inappropriately excessive.
The Challenge Of Proving A Violation Of Work Hours
Car accident victims who are able to demonstrate that a truck driver’s fatigue or breach of federal regulations contributed to the cause of their collision may be eligible for financial compensation. To merely declare that this was the case, however, is not sufficient evidence. Instead, those who make assertions will be required to provide proof to support their statements. It is possible that the claimant may need to look further than the driver’s log book, which is required by law but can be altered in order to demonstrate that a truck driver spent significantly more time behind the wheel than is permitted. These pieces of evidence could include, but are not limited to:
- information retrieved from the “black box” of the vehicle, which may contain logs of the amount of time and distance travelled;
- records of calls;
- Transactions with cash and credit cards carried out by the driver;
- Spending money from groceries and gas;
- Information obtained from the toll booths; and
- images obtained from various cameras, including those used for security and traffic.
Get in contact with a member of our legal team as soon as possible to get more information about the evidence you might require to establish that the drowsiness of a truck driver was the cause of your accident.
If you were hurt in a truck accident, obtaining compensation for your injuries from the truck driver who was negligent may be difficult due to the major obstacles that may stand in your way. Get in touch with a reputable attorney who specialises in truck accidents as soon as possible to discuss how your case might be strengthened.