Truck Driver Fatigue

Irvine Truck Accident Attorney

Federal trucking regulations require truck drivers to only be behind the wheel for a certain amount of hours each shift and each week to avoid dangerous truck driver fatigue. If they do not adhere to these strict requirements, which are arguably too lenient as it is, they greatly increase the chances of causing a truck accidents that hurts innocent motorists around them.

When a truck driver is fatigued, they will often experience:

  • Loss of lane control
  • Increased reaction time
  • Difficulty turning safely
  • Unintentional speeding

Driving such a large vehicle while exhausted is nothing short of negligence, and the trucker and their parent company who may have mismanaged their schedule should be penalized for it. More importantly, anyone who has been hurt by a resulting truck accident should not be expected to pay for their own recovery and repairs.

Hit by a negligent trucker? Contact our Irvine personal injury lawyer today.

FMCSA Regulations or Lack Thereof

Commercial truck drivers are tasked with the unique job of shipping cargo from one side of the state to another. As driving is essentially all they do, they are required to do a great deal of it. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set strict guidelines to attempt to reduce and prevent the number of truck accidents caused directly by trucker fatigue.

Federal trucking regulations regarding truck driver shifts are:

  1. No shift can last longer than 14 hours.
  2. There must not be more than 11 hours spent behind the wheel in one shift.
  3. There must be at least 30 minutes of rest for every 8 hours spent driving.
  4. There must be 10 hours of consecutive time off between shifts.
  5. There must be 34 hours of consecutive time off at the end of a 7-day workweek.

At a cursory glance, it becomes apparent that current safety standards might require revision. Expecting anyone to drive 11 hours in one day and more than 70 hours in one week without getting fatigued is unreasonable. This does not even consider the possibility of trucking companies using loopholes to keep their drivers on the road for longer than the 11 hour maximum.

Additional hours may be added to a trucker’s schedule if they:

  • Do not drive outside a 100-air mile radius
  • Are slowed due to inclement weather
  • Experience emergency conditions
  • Work solely with oilfield operations

How Can We Help You? Call (714) 701-8182

Medical bills and costs of repair can quickly add up after you have been seriously injured by a fatigued truck driver, especially if you are debilitated to the point where you can no longer go to work. At The Law Offices of Thomas E. Rockett, we are committed to doing everything we can to maximize the compensation amount you deserve, being careful to consider related expenses you could incur into the future, such as rehabilitation program fees. Schedule your free case evaluation with our Irvine truck accident attorney today to learn more about our services.