Thirteen percent of truck driver accidents are caused by fatigue, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Driving drowsy is a major problem in the trucking industry. Because more miles driven equal more money, some truck drivers push themselves to the limit and attempt to drive for as long as possible. Aurora accident victims of a fatigued truck driver should get help from a Colorado truck accident attorney.
Why Truck Driver Fatigue and Driving Drowsy Occur
Truck drivers may be guilty of driving drowsy because they often work 10- to 12-hour days or longer. Why is this? Some truck drivers blame it on a tight schedule because they have deadlines to meet for the carrier or shipper. If they are not at a certain place on time, then they could be disciplined or even worse, lose their jobs. In addition, some drivers surveyed may violate the rules because they need the money. Traffic jams and extreme weather conditions are also reasons cited for long hours and fatigue. If you believe fatigue was a factor in your accident, contact a Colorado truck accident attorney to determine your next steps.
New Safety Regulations to Prevent Drivers from Driving Drowsy
Because fatigue can lead to a truck driver accident, the FMCSA has taken precautions to keep drowsy driving from occurring. Truck drivers must not drive beyond the 14th hour after having come on duty after 10 hours off duty. What’s more, a maximum of 11 hours may be driven after the 10 hours of off duty time. A driver is also prohibited from driving after 60 or 70 hours of on-duty time over a seven- or eight-day period, respectively.
In addition to these requirements, long-haul drivers must monitor their driving time. Devices such as electronic on-board recorders may be used to ensure that the trucking companies are aware of how long the drivers actually work.
The law does not fully prevent fatigued driving from occurring, however. Repetitive tasks like driving may lead to fatigue in some drivers, which could cause a truck driver accident. The laws may only go so far to ensure that truck drivers are fit to drive. Drivers should not drive if they feel unfit, and continuing to drive despite this may be considered negligent.
Contacting a Colorado Truck Accident Attorney
A truck driver accident can be highly complex. Many factors and parties are often involved. In addition, some trucking companies may destroy crucial evidence, which could make a case more difficult to prove.
Residents of Aurora should get legal help from a Colorado truck accident attorney at theLaw Office of D.J. Banovitz. Call us at (303) 300-5060 and request our free booklet that discusses seven mistakes that may ruin an injury claim. There is no excuse for driving drowsy. If you were involved in a truck driver accident, make sure you recover compensation for your injuries.