Copyright © 2021 Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduced with Permission.
The dangers of driving while overtired or fatigued are obvious. When someone is fatigued and trying to drive, they are unable to fully concentrate on the road. Another big concern of dring while overtired is a slow reaction time. Being unable to concentrate or react in time can lead to a serious accident. This is why there are certain regulations that truck drivers must follow to ensure that they are not fatigued on the job. However, some truck drivers may not always follow these regulations, which can result in a collision. If you have been injured in a truck accident that was caused by an overtired or fatigued driver, reach out to a seasoned truck collision attorney. A Fremont truck driver fatigue accident lawyer has experience investigating these types of cases and ensuring that injured individuals can recover the damages they deserve.
The most important rules and regulations regarding truck driver fatigue are found in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, which is under the Hours of Service Regulations. These regulations have also been fully adopted by the state of Ohio. The Hours of Service Regulations can be complicated and there are exceptions depending on the length of the route and the load that is being hauled.
A commercial motor vehicle driver carrying cargo has to go off duty after working for 14 hours. It is important to note that working does not just mean driving. Working could be reporting to a warehouse to pick up a load of cargo that is not ready to be loaded for another three hours. Even if the truck driver has to sit and wait on the load for three hours, it is still considered work. Once a truck driver has reached the 14-hour work limit, they have to remain off duty for at least 10 consecutive hours before they can begin driving again. Also, once an individual has driven for a period of eight hours, they must take a 30-minute break.
Truck drivers operate on a seven-day or an eight-day work week. In an eight-day work week, a person is allowed up to 70 hours on duty, which also takes into consideration anytime they are not driving but are on the clock. Once a driver has spent 70 hours on duty, they may restart their work week after they have taken 34 or more consecutive hours off-duty. For more information about how many days and hours a truck driver can work, contact a Fremont truck driver fatigue accident lawyer.
Truck drivers keep track of their hours on duty in a paper logbook, which looks like a big spreadsheet. In this logbook, the driver must document when they were driving, when they are not driving, when they took their break, and when they were sleeping. Today, more and more electronic devices are being used that can track this information more accurately. In the past, there were several instances of drivers keeping a double logbook. One logbook would contain their correct time and then the second logbook would be used at weigh stations or given to different employers when tracking their time. In these cases, the truck driver was in violation of Hours of Service Regulations, which could show liability if the driver was in a collision. A Fremont truck driver fatigue accident lawyer could investigate a truck driver’s logbook to see if they were in violation of the Hours of Service Regulations and if they were, help the injured individual collect truck accident damages.
A study of driver fatigue was conducted by the Transport Accident Commision and it showed that nearly 20 percent of roadway fatalities are due to driving while drowsy. Long work hours are a common factor for driver fatigue. Also, working a different shift could cause fatigue. Many companies have swing shifts, which entail people working first shift one day and second shift the next. Working different shifts can mess with people’s sleeping habits. Lack of quality sleep is major a factor for driver fatigue.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, reach out to a Fremont truck driver fatigue accident lawyer. An attorney could investigate your case and determine what was the cause of the collision. If it was driver fatigue, then the lawyer could prove that the truck driver and/or truck company was negligent. Let an attorney help you collect the damages you deserve. Call today to schedule a consultation.
Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC