You have likely heard that those operating large semi-trucks and tractor-trailers on Plano’s roads have to undergo extensive training before they can do so. Thus, after experiencing an accident caused by a truck driver, you may rightly question how such a thing might have happened.
Many of those in similar situations that we here at Carpenter & Associates have worked with in the past have posed the same question. Our answer often comes as a surprise: perhaps fatigue was a factor.
Preventing truck driver fatigue
You likely feel slightly fatigued after only a couple of hours behind the wheel; imagine how much more so a trucker must feel after being on the road for days. To help prevent truck driver fatigue, federal regulations exist that dictate exactly how many hours one can spend working. Per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, these are:
- 11-hour driving limits: A driver can only drive up to 11 hours before needing to take 10 consecutive hours off
- 14-hour driving limits: A driver cannot work beyond the 14th consecutive hours after 10 consecutive hours off-duty
- 60/70 hour work weeks: A driver can only work between 60-70 during a 7-8-day work week (an off-duty period of 36 consecutive hours re-starts the work week)
- Mandatory breaks: A driver cannot drive for more than eight hours without taking a break of at least 30 minutes
Proving fatigue was a factor in an accident
You might wonder how you can prove that fatigue did indeed play a part in your accident. A review of the truck driver’s work logs (the mandatory records they must maintain detailing their hours worked) should reveal whether they were in violation of the regulations.
You can learn more about dealing with truck accidents by continuing to explore our site.