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Litigating Ohio trucking accident cases against trucking companies has always been complicated. However, new laws regarding truck driver hours that are going into effect are changing the rules yet again, and will make these cases even more complicated in the future. This is why it is essential to have an experienced attorney handling any trucking accident case such as the Oregon truck accident lawyer at the Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC.
Tractor trailers weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds, and an impact with a passenger car often spells disaster. Unfortunately, too many truck drivers are operating their vehicles extremely fatigued, often driving for days on end without getting the proper amount of rest that is required by law. For many years, study after study has shown that driver fatigue is directly linked to the likelihood that the driver will be involved in an accident.
One of the major issues that a trucking accident lawyer will address in a trucking accident case is the complex set of rules that trucking companies and their drivers are supposed to follow relative to allowing drivers to work a certain number of hours. There are many classes of “time” that are relevant to a trucking accident case such as “driving time,” “on-duty time,” “off-duty time,” and “sleeper berth time.” Each of these classifications of time has different definitions and exceptions to those definitions. Then, even if the driver is by definition working in one of those time classifications, there may instances where the clock will stop depending on certain activities that may or may not be taking place. Discovering whether there was a violation of the driving hour rules can be critical to proving liability in a trucking accident case. Simply stated, this is a complex process and the assistance of a lawyer is absolutely essential.
To top off all of the above, new rules will be going into effect this summer that revise the above standards and even change some of the “time” definitions. There will soon be the implementation of “restart limitations,” ” required rest breaks,” and a modified definition of “on-duty time.” Ohio trucking accident lawyers such as the attorneys at the Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC utilize published resources that the trucking companies use in order to make sure that either the driver was in compliance with the law, or, if not, expose that fact. It is well known in the trucking industry that drivers will often refer to their supposedly official log books as “comic books” because they are essentially a work of fantasy – not accurate and many drivers cheat when filling them out. An experienced Oregon truck accident lawyer will cut through the confusion and find out what was really going on.
An experienced trucking accident lawyer will know which documents to request from the other side during the discovery process. This includes data from black boxes, trip recorders, GPS data, dispatch records, trip reports, shipping documents, bills of lading and manifests, documents relating to fuel purchases, toll receipts, weigh station receipts, and trailer wash-out receipts. A good lawyer will then hire an expert to analyze the data.
In order to preserve this information, a lawyer will immediately send out a letter to the trucking company demanding that all evidence be preserved and not be destroyed, even pursuant to a document retention policy. This is another reason why if you have been injured in a trucking accident you should contact an Oregon truck accident lawyer. Contact the Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC today to file your claim.
Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC