Most people are unfamiliar with the rules imposed on truck drivers regarding driving time limitations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is the federal agency tasked with ensuring that truck companies and their drivers are held to certain standards of safety on the roads. Where questions exist about what these standards are, the FMCSA provides some guidance.
For example, what are the drive time limits for a truck driver and who enforces them? Trucking is a federally regulated industry in which a set of rules have been put in place. There are a few different rules regarding hours of service regulationenforced by the FMCSA. For example, commercial vehicle drivers should not drive more than 11 hours in a row, and only after a 10-hour break from driving. Of course, just because there are rules does not mean truck drivers, or their employers, may occasionally stray from them.
If the rules are violated, it could lead to a drowsy driver, who may ultimately make a mistake and cause an accident. Those in such a situation may thus find themselves asking, what, should I do if I was involved in a wreck with a fatigued truck driver?
Working with an experienced attorney who can act immediately to preserve evidence for your case can be a good first step after any initial medical needs are addressed. Truck drivers are required to keep time logs, or driving journals. These record the hours a driver has been on the road without a break, and can be crucial evidence to recovery in your case. Though commercial vehicle accident cases can be filed within one year after the accident, it is not uncommon for detrimental evidence to be destroyed as time passes. Acting fast can be key to obtaining one’s fully entitled financial recovery.
Trucking accidents can be more complicated than a regular vehicle accident. Liability may fall with one, or both parties depending on differing factors involved. If the driver is an employ of a trucking company, it is likely the driver was following the company’s directives and thus the company may also face some liability. Therefore, both parties could be listed as Defendants in a lawsuit and compensation may be sought from both.