It’s really no secret that semi-trucks pose a serious threat to other motorist on the road. This is especially true when they are driven negligently or they are improperly maintained. Those who are injured in an accident caused by a big rig should consider taking legal action because if they are successful they may be able to recover compensation for their damages. To do so, though, they must be able to satisfy certain legal elements.
One way to satisfy many of those legal elements is to show that a trucker failed to abide by regulations that apply to hours of service. These regulations seek to limit the number of hours that truckers are on the road in hopes of preventing driver fatigue.
Under these regulations, truckers can only drive for 11 hours after a 10-hour rest period. Those 10 hours of rest must be consecutive. Also, truckers cannot drive beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming off of the 10 hour off duty shift. These are not the only hours of service rules that apply to truckers. Additionally, truckers can only take to the road if it has been eight hours or less since their last off-duty period or a 30-minute sleep break. Truckers are also disallowed from driving more than 60 hours in any seven day timeframe or 70 hours in an eight day time frame.
Regulators hope that these rules will allow truckers to obtain the rest they need in order to remain attentive and safe while on the road. Having regulations and policing them are two different things.
Unfortunately, although truckers are required to keep logs, they oftentimes wind up driving when they are fatigued and tired. When this happens and an accident results, those who are injured may be able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit.
If successful on one of these claims, a victim may be able to recover compensation for damages suffered, which may include medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Those who find themselves in this position may want to work closely with legal advocate of their choosing who may be able to help better position them for success on their claim.