Truck drivers can easily become fatigued due to their long shifts, much of which are spent driving. Because of this, the federal government has very strict requirements. The Federal Motor Safety Carrier (FMSCA) sets the Hours of Service for most truckers to a 14-hour work day before they are required to go off-duty for 10 hours. Compared to an average 8 hour work-day, which includes regular breaks throughout the day, truck drivers are permitted to have up to 11 actual hours of driving time before being required to take a break. That is potentially 11 consecutive hours without rest. Operating a large truck requires a great deal of attentiveness. Given the long hours and demanding nature of driving, one can see how easy a truck driver can become fatigued.
Sadly, fatigued driving occurs more frequently than one would think. The CDC reports that at least 1 in 25 drivers reported falling asleep behind the wheel in the past 30 days. Meanwhile The National Highway Safety Administration reports that drowsy drivers cause more than 100,000 police reported accidents each year.
Driving a truck while fatigued can be especially dangerous due to the nature and size of the vehicle, among other factors. Drowsiness can potentially directly impact one’s ability to safely operate a motor vehicle and may:
Additionally, it is important to consider the size and weight of the vehicles that truck drivers operate as well as the cargo they typically carry. Truck drivers can present additional dangers to others because their large, heavy semi-trucks are capable of causing more severe crashes than a typical passenger vehicle.
At Gruber Law Offices, we are extremely experienced and focused on investigating serious truck accidents on behalf of crash victims. Sadly, these crashes frequently involve wrongful death and catastrophic injuries. Investigations of truck accidents require detailed, sophisticated and immediate attention. Commercial trucks often have ECM devices and telematics that may reveal significant details such as speed as well as other factors such as hard braking events, gas or brake pedal enablement and other details. Tire markings, logbooks and other important factors play a role as to why an immediate investigation is necessary. Many companies require surveillance cameras to be placed both outward facing as well as inward facing on the driver.
On the other hand, insurance companies and trucking companies frequently have an emergency “on-call” team of defense lawyers, insurance adjusters, accident reconstructionists and others that appear on crash scenes in the immediate aftermath, sometimes within minutes or hours of the crash.
Truck crashes can occur for many reasons. Unfortunately, in some of our trucking cases, we have recovered evidence of truck drivers and/or companies who have failed to follow the federally mandated Hours of Service requirements.
If a truck accident has left you or a loved one injured, Gruber Law Offices can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. We regularly help individuals and families who have suffered serious injuries in semi-truck accidents in Milwaukee and throughout Wisconsin. In fact, we have successfully and frequently taken on some of the largest trucking companies and their insurers. Our team knows how to handle truck crash cases. These cases drastically differ from a traditional car accident case.
Contact Gruber Law Offices today for a free review of your case. Our experienced and aggressive truck accident lawyers conduct immediate and detailed investigations. There is never a fee until we win. ONE CALL … THAT’S ALL!