The majority of truck drivers are safe drivers, obeying the rules of the road to keep themselves and others around them as safe as possible. However, there are some who flout the rules, putting other motorists and pedestrians at risk for tragic collisions. Many of those who are violating the rules don’t think they’re harming anyone, such as those who haven’t slept in 24 hours and think they can make it just a little further. But then there are others who engage in outright reckless behavior such as those who drink before getting behind the wheel, or trucking companies who turn a blind eye toward violations of federal law.
If you have been the victim of a truck collision, you should not have to pay for the oversights and downright dangerous behavior of others. You deserve full compensation for your injuries and the pain and suffering, lost wages and medical bills that come with them. The first step is to hire a truck accident attorney in Southwest Virginia skilled in handling cases involving large trucks.
The most common truck collision regulation violations involve:
1. Trucker Hiring and Training
These violations include the failure of a motor carrier to screen drivers prior to hiring, verify credentials and check up on their driving history. They can also involve failure to check medical histories or failure to properly train truck drivers.
2. Hours of Service (HOS)
Truckers who drive for periods that exceed FMCSA limits can be found guilty of HOS violations. Whether they attempt to fake compliance or they falsify their log books, these violations are extremely serious. Too long behind the wheel without adequate rest leads to fatigue, and fatigue leads to dangerous collisions. In fact, studies show that drowsy drivers can be just as impaired as drunk drivers, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
In fact, drowsy driving caused 91,000 car crashes, 50,000 injuries, and nearly 800 deaths in 2017 alone. In contrast, alcohol was a factor in 9,950 collisions.
3. Drug Testing
Trucking companies that do not drug test their drivers as part of the hiring process, or as part of random checks throughout employment, are in violation of federal regulations. Failure to record the test results or altering the test result records in any way also violates federal regulations.
4. Truck Inspection and Maintenance
Owners of commercial trucks have a responsibility to regularly inspect, maintain and repair all trucks in their fleet or face federal trucking violations.
5. Securing Cargo
Another violation is failure to properly load, secure and balance cargo. Perhaps not enough tie downs were used, or maybe a truck has been overloaded beyond compliance, or perhaps said cargo was not inspected before a haul.
Proper and thorough documentation and recordkeeping are required to maintain compliance with FMCSA regulations, and apply not just to the truckers themselves but to motor carriers as well. Failure to keep adequate records or the falsification of records to alter compliance are both considered serious violations.
Contacting a qualified truck accident lawyer in Southwest Virginia is of paramount importance if you have been hit by a truck either as a motorist or as a pedestrian, and violations are suspected.
Contact Altizer Law
To learn more about your rights as they apply to truck collision violations, contact us at 540-345-2000 for a free, no-obligation consultation with our Southwest Virginia truck accident attorney. We have extensive experience with truck collision violations and can ensure your rights are protected.