Truck drivers play an integral role in helping transport and deliver goods day in and day out. However, truck driving can be tiring and stressful, and sometimes the job takes a toll on drivers.
When tired drivers are on the road, this increases the chances of a truck accident occurring. A truck accident attorney can assist you if you sustain injuries in a collision with a tired driver.
Truck Driver Fatigue Is Common
Unfortunately, tired truck drivers get on the road every single day.
Several factors contribute to drivers feeling particularly tired, including:
- Lack of sleep
- Too many hours on the road
- Night driving
- Sleep disorders
- Changes in work shifts
Whatever the reason, a tired truck driver is a danger on the road, putting others around them at risk for an accident.
How Can a Tired Truck Driver Cause an Accident?
Tired driving impacts a truck driver’s ability to safely and responsibly operate their truck.
While a driver is exhausted, it is common to experience:
- Slowed reaction times and reflexes
- Increased risk of falling asleep while driving
- Poor decision-making
- Easy distractibility
- Loss of control over their truck
- Impaired judgment
- Increased risk of drifting in and out of lanes
Driver fatigue is a problem for drivers in general, specifically for semi-truck drivers. Driving a truck is dangerous as it is, but when you include driver fatigue, it can substantially increase the risk of an accident.
FMCSA Regulations Regarding Truck Driver Fatigue
Trucking is a highly regulated industry. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) provides nationwide regulations for trucking companies, and drivers must follow these rules.
In 2019, the FMCSA introduced new regulations to improve the safety of others on the road by aiming to reduce driver fatigue.
These new regulations specify the following:
- Truck drivers are only allowed to work a maximum of 70 hours as opposed to the old maximum of 82
- Drivers are allowed to work more than 70 hours within a week only if they rest for 32 consecutive hours, including at least two nights
- Truck drivers must take a 30-minute break within the first eight hours of working
The new regulation maintains the 11-hour daily driving and 14-hour workday limits.
Years of compiled information and statistics led the FMCSA to implement these new regulations, hoping to positively impact truck drivers and keep the roads as safe as possible.
Truck drivers are to respect these regulations always. If a driver violates any regulation, they face penalties. Truck accident lawyers use a violation as evidence to hold the driver and the trucking company liable if a violation contributes to an accident.
Liability for Tired Truck Driver Accidents
Liability for a trucking accident resulting from fatigued driving depends on the details of the accident and the truck driver’s situation.
The trucking company could be liable for an accident if, for example, they encouraged their driver to violate regulations or falsify logbooks.
Even if the trucking company wasn’t directly at fault, and it was the truck driver’s fault, the company could still be held liable.
To determine liability, a truck accident attorney will investigate your accident. Liability is one of the most critical parts of a case to pursue compensation.
A Truck Accident Attorney Can Help if a Tired Truck Driver Caused Your Collision
If you’re in a truck accident with a tired truck driver, you may be able to seek financial recovery for your injuries. Truck accident cases are challenging to navigate, as they differ significantly from regular car accident cases.
An experienced truck accident lawyer knows how to properly handle these cases, giving you peace of mind and an opportunity to achieve a favorable outcome.
Contact Our Truck Accident Law Firm in Los Angeles, CA
If you were injured in an accident in Los Angeles, CA or you lost a loved one and you need legal assistance, please contact us to schedule a free consultation. One of our Los Angeles truck accident lawyers at M&Y Personal Injury Lawyers will get in touch with you soon.
Other Truck Accident Cases We Cover
- Tractor-trailer tire blowout
- FedEx and UPS truck accidents
- Jackknife accidents
- Truck driver drug and alcohol use
- Lost load accidents