Drowsy driving is one of the leading causes of truck accidents in the US. Truck drivers are under enormous pressure to meet deadlines, get paid, and keep their jobs, but when the driver of a 15-ton commercial vehicle becomes drowsy, the results can be catastrophic. Of course, the motorists most likely to be injured or killed in a truck accident are not the truck drivers themselves, but the drivers and passengers in other vehicles.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulates the commercial trucking industry, including how many hours truck drivers are permitted to operate their vehicles on a daily and weekly basis. In 2013, new provisions were put in place to limit the number of hours a driver may legally spend on the road in an effort to reduce the dangers of sleep-deprivation. These include:
- An 11 hour daily driving limit
- A 70 hour maximum work week, followed by 34 hours off duty
- A required 30-minute break in the first 8 hours of a shift.
However, the trucking industry is extremely competitive, and these kinds of regulations are not always enough to keep sleep-deprived drivers from getting behind the wheel. Trucking companies need to make deliveries both quickly and cheaply to turn a profit. The sooner a truck returns from a delivery, the sooner it can be back on the road with another. To minimize costs, trucking companies often pay drivers by the mile and don’t compensate for “on-duty” time spent on inspections or mandated rest times. This system inherently encourages drivers to skimp on mandated rest breaks to maximize their paychecks.
In the event of an accident, trucking companies also have their own legal teams who are familiar with the laws and how to use them to their clients’ advantage. If you are involved in an accident with a distracted truck driver, you need a well-qualified attorney who understands how to properly represent your claim.
Why You Need an Attorney Who Specializes in Trucker Fatigue Accidents
Munley Law has over 50 years of experience in dealing with truck accident claims, including those caused by drowsy driving. Trucking companies have a team of investigators, adjustors, agents, and lawyers to help protect them. As the accident victim, you need your own team of legal experts to protect you. The attorneys at Munley Law have consistently been named to the Best Lawyers in America and have received the highest peer review ratings possible from Martindale Hubble. Additionally, we have received some of the largest settlements and verdicts in the country for our clients.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a trucking accident in Pennsylvania, New York or New Jersey call us today at (855) 866-5529 or use our online contact form. We will provide you with a FREE consultation and help you decide how to proceed after your accident.