Trucking industry regulations in place for good reason
It isn’t hard to imagine how a collision with a semitruck or an 18-wheeler can cause immense damage. These are huge vehicles carrying heavy payloads at high rates of speed, and a single instance of negligence, whether it’s improper maintenance, impaired driving, fatigued driving or speeding, can have devastating consequences.
The trucking industry is closely regulated for good reason. Truck drivers and trucking companies must ensure that vehicles and trailers are safe and properly loaded, and drivers must adhere to strict hours-of-service limits. Unfortunately, failure to meet those requirements results in serious injury to Indiana residents each year.
In 2013, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) enacted new rules to limit the number of consecutive hours truck drivers can be behind the wheel. For many people who don’t work in the trucking industry, the average maximum work week for truck drivers undoubtedly remains too high, even after the changes were enacted.
Before the rule change, truck drivers could work 82 hours in a single week. Now the average work week is limited to a maximum of 70 hours. Additionally, truck drivers are allowed to be behind the wheel for a maximum of 11 hours a day, and the entire workday, including time not behind the wheel, is limited to 14 hours. Truck drivers must also keep accurate hours-of-service records.
These limits and requirements are meant to reduce the risk of truck driver fatigue, the effects of which have been compared to the effects of drunk driving.
Collisions with large trucks often leave people with lifelong injuries that require extended medical treatment and rehabilitation. Many people are unable to return to work after being injured in truck accidents. At Steve Crell Law, we understand the challenges faced by truck accident victims, and we fight to get those clients the compensation they need and deserve.
To learn more about our firm’s areas of practice, please visit our truck accident overview.