There is an implicit danger in doing anything while fatigued but operating commercial trucks can be especially risky. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 13 percent of large truck drivers were classified as fatigued at the time of their accident.
Trucking regulations limit driving hours for truckers
Truck drivers often spend long hours behind the wheel to complete their deliveries on time. However, they must make sure to abide by FMCSA regulations. These regulations limit the number of consecutive hours a driver can spend behind the wheel to protect drivers as well as other travelers on the roadways. These regulations include, but are not limited to, the following:
- 14-hour driving window – You may drive up to 11 hours out of a 14-hour period, after being off-duty for 10 or more consecutive hours.
- 11-hour driving limit – You may drive up to 11 hours total during the 14-hour period.
- 30-minute rest break – You must take a 30-minute break if more than 8 straight hours have passed since the last off-duty period of at least half an hour.
- 60/70-hour “weekly” limit – You are limited to a total of 60/70 hours per 7 or 8-day period, but the limit is not based on a set week.
Failing to adhere to trucking regulations
When a North Carolina truck driver fails to follow the FMCSA’s trucking regulations, they are engaging in negligent driving. If the driver’s negligence causes an accident, both the driver and their employer could be liable for any injuries or damages caused to the other parties involved in the accident.
If you have been injured in an accident caused by truck driver fatigue, you are not alone. A personal injury attorney specializing in truck accident lawsuits can help you file a claim against the parties responsible for your crash. Truck accident victims can recover significant compensation to cover their medical bills and other expenses.