Tired Truck Driver Accidents in Austin
We Can Help You Seek Justice – Call 24/7 for a Free Review
All truck drivers are governed by rules established by the Federal Motor
Carrier Safety Administration. These rules include guidelines for how
much sleep a truck driver must have based on the number of hours they
have been on the road. When these guidelines are ignored, tired drivers
can get behind the wheel, which puts everyone else on the road at risk.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured by a tired truck
driver, you should have your case reviewed by an Austin truck accident
lawyer who can help you understand your rights and legal options. At The
Stewart Law Firm, PLLC, we have extensive experience handling all types of
truck accident cases. Let us put this experience to work for you!
Contact us today to have an Austin personal injury lawyer review your case for free.
Who Is Liable for an Accident Caused By Driver Fatigue?
Truck driver fatigue claims are often complex because of the fact that
there can be multiple parties who can share in the liability. While it
is the truck driver's responsibility to ensure that he or she gets
enough sleep, some investigations show that the driver was pushed into
extra hours of service by his or her employer in order to meet a tight deadline.
When handling these kinds of cases, we do the following:
- Look for prior violations by the driver and/or their employer
- Review the driver’s log books to look for hours of service violations
- Examine information from GPS units or black box recorders
At The Stewart Law Firm, PLLC, our team knows how to investigate cases
involving truck driver fatigue and how to build a strong personal injury
case designed to secure the best possible outcome for you. If you or someone
you love was hit by a drowsy driver, please do not hesitate to discuss
your options with an Austin truck accident attorney at our firm.
Truck Drivers Must Abide By Federal Regulations
In the U.S., all truck drivers must abide by the hours of service regulations
set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. According
to the FMCSA, truck drivers cannot work more than 11 hours without taking
a 10-hour break in between shifts. Similarly, drivers cannot work more
than 14 hours a day, with only 11 hours being spent on the road.
Over a seven-day period, truck drivers cannot work more than 60 hours.
Over an eight-day period, they cannot work more than 70 hours. They are
also required to keep a log book for every 24-hour period of service.
Trucking companies must ensure that their drivers are maintaining their
log books, and are prohibited from overworking their drivers.
Falsified Driver Logs
Truck drivers are required to log their hours of operation to show that
they are abiding by the hours of service regulations. Unfortunately, drivers
are not always honest and may falsify these logs. Usually, in the case
of a trucking crash, driver logs may be a part of the evidence that can
be used to prove negligence. If this data is false or incorrect, it could
hamper the way the case is handled. It can also help the driver avoid
punishment for the violations he or she has committed.
Pressure of Deadlines
Fatigued driving is not always the fault of the driver in this industry.
Remember, these large trucks are used to transport goods and products
all across the country. Oftentimes, these deliveries are accompanied by
a specified deadline. Because these deadlines are often very tight, the
trucking company may force or encourage the driver to violate regulations
in order to meet the deadline. They may threaten the driver that he or
she would lose their job if they don’t comply.
Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medication
Truck drivers work long hours, often sitting in the same position the entire
time. This can cause some pain and strains. Or perhaps the driver has
come down with a cold. The driver may rely on prescription pain medication
or over-the-counter medicine to help them complete their task. Unfortunately,
some of the medication it takes to help cure these ailments can cause
fatigue and drowsiness. This can lead to a serious crash if the driver
starts to become drowsy while driving.
Contact The Stewart Law Firm for a Free Consultation
Driving fatigue is not only a violation of the trucking industry regulations,
but it is very dangerous for any other drivers on the road. If you or
someone you love was hurt in a crash involving one of these large commercial
trucks, our Austin truck accident attorneys at The Stewart Law Firm, PLLC
can help you. We put our experience to work for you, analyzing every detail
of your potential case to determine the strategy that would work best
in seeking compensation.
If your truck accident was caused by a tired driver, you have rights. Call
(512) 271-5112 for help.