Overworked Truck Drivers – Spell Disaster

As of 2013, most commercial heavy truck drivers have to operate under new “Hours of Service” regulations which the government requires they that must comply with when operating heavy commercial trucks.

The undeniable logic of limiting a truck driver’s hours of operations was to reduce driver risk and reduce potential driver fatigue.

It has been fully documented that heavy truck drivers who refuse or fail to follow the mandated time restrictions are a danger. When they drive overly extended days or hours, they place all of us, on the roads with them at a higher risk of accidents.

The regulations, mandated by law, are clear. These heavy truck drivers may not operate for more than 11 hours after a mandated 10-hour rest period. A driver also cannot be on duty for more than 14 hours following the same 10-hour rest period, even if the time doesn’t involve actual driving.

Those and the other new rules were put in place as an effort to keep heavy truck operators alert and fresh.

There are those drivers that will not follow the new law. These drivers are killing people at an unfortunate rate.

In, 2006 a “Driver Fatigue and Alertness Study” discovered that excessive fatigue can lead to:

  • A driver having a longer reaction time to crucial events;
  • A driver having less effective machinery control responses;
  • A driver having decreased sustained performance due to lack of motivation, from tiredness;
  • A driver having increased symptoms of drowsiness;
  • A driver having decreased road watchfulness; and
  • Having decreased danger alertness.
  • A driver suffering from increased lapses in their attention to driving;
  • The driver processing and making decisions at a slow rate.

Fatigue is a major problem. Fatigue obviously creates potential hazards on our roadways.

When a heavy truck driver is overly fatigued behind the wheel, everyone else on the highway is put at increased risk of death or injury.

Researchers have found that operating a motor vehicle while drowsy increased a person’s risk of a crash by at least four to six times.

Attorneys at our firm have litigated a good number of claims in which operator fatigue provably resulted in serious accidents.

Unfortunately, too many trucking companies do not have, or do not follow, the proper procedural safeguards legally in place to reduce the probability of driver fatigue and lessen or prevent violations of the government on-duty hour time limitations.

Over many years, the injury attorneys at Carabin Shaw have seen the continued repetitive development of operating patterns where some trucking and hauling companies have repeated fatigue-related, dangerous excess driving time violations.

Carabin Shaw’s Injury Lawyers will keep pushing for safer roads and highways by holding trucking and shipping companies liable and accountable for legal violations of the laws specifically designed to keep overly fatigued drivers off the roads and highways. We will not stop fighting this fight until every driver on the road has had sufficient rest before getting behind the wheel.

Are you in Corpus Christi? Have you been in an accident with an 18 wheeler or other big rig?

Give Carabin Shaw a call. We can help. Call us at 361.444.1111, local if you’re in Corpus Christi.

Visits with the Attorney are by appointment only. Main office San Antonio, Texas.

The Carabin Shaw Offices in Corpus Christi are located two blocks south of the Nueces County Courthouse in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Our Corpus Christi telephones are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 361.444.1111.


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