Semi-trucks can be extremely dangerous when improperly driven. That’s why federal regulators try to establish rules that must be followed in hopes of curtailing serious truck accidents. Yet, all too often truckers fail to abide by these regulations. The results can be tragic, leaving victims with severe, long-term injuries. Those victims who want to recover compensation for their losses need to know about some of these trucking regulations, as showing a violation can bolster a finding of negligence.
Hours of service regulations
Truckers oftentimes put in long hours that can lead to tiredness and fatigue. In order to prevent drowsy driving, federal regulators have capped the number of hours that can be driven by a trucker in a particular period of time. These are known as hours of service regulations. For example, a trucker can only drive his or her rig for a total of 60 hours in a seven-day period, or 70 hours in an eight-day period. These truckers are also disallowed from driving beyond the 14th consecutive hour after starting their shift.
Truckers are also subject to mandatory rest periods. A 30-minute rest period must occur after every eight consecutive hours of driving, and they are limited to 11 hours of driving before they must take at least 10 consecutive hours off. Many of these test periods must be spent in a sleeper berth to ensure that a trucker is resting up.
Gather the evidence you need to build your case
Gathering evidence of a trucking regulation violation can be easier said than done. It might require obtaining records from a truck company and/or taking testimony from a reluctant trucker. Regardless of which strategy you choose to pursue, you need to know how to use the law to your favor. That’s where an attorney who is experienced in this area of the law may prove beneficial. He or she might be able to help you position yourself as strongly as possible, which could lead to the outcome you need to find accountability and to recover compensation.