When large commercial trucks become involved in accidents with much smaller and lighter passenger vehicles, the passenger vehicle and its occupants will almost always suffer the most damage. Thousands of people are severely injured or killed each year in preventable truck accidents – in fact, the number of truck accidents has increased approximately 20 percent over the past two decades.
In order to reduce the number of truck accidents that occur on our nation’s highways, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) created a set of regulations that truck drivers and their employers must follow. Unfortunately, devastating collisions continue to occur due to failures to abide by these rules.
The following are some of the most commonly violated FMCSA regulations:
- Hours of service violations. Truck drivers are required to take mandatory 30-minute rest breaks after eight hours of driving and are not allowed to drive more than 14 hours since their last 10-hour break. Many drivers ignore these rules and drive longer than they should in an effort to increase profits. This can cause drivers to become fatigued, increasing their chances of falling asleep behind the wheel and causing a serious accident.
- Improper cargo loading. When trailers unevenly loaded, the uneven weight distribution could increase the chance that the trailer will jackknife or flip. Similarly, an overloaded trailer can lead to broken axles or delayed braking due to the excessive weight.
- Failure to conduct drug and alcohol testing. Unfortunately, there are some drivers who choose to drive while intoxicated. Negligent employers who fail to test their drivers for drugs and alcohol may be held liable if the driver causes an accident.
- Vehicle maintenance failures. Because trucks drive thousands of miles on a constant basis, it is critical that they receive regular maintenance. Failure to do so can result in a serious vehicle malfunction, such as a brake failure, that can lead to a crash.
If you have been injured in a truck accident or have suffered the loss of a loved one, you may be entitled to compensation to cover your accident-related losses, including your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. At Bartimus Frickleton and Robertson, P.C., we have extensive experience handling truck accident claims and are prepared to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
Contact our firm today to consult with a Leawood truck accident lawyer.
We serve clients in Leawood, Kansas City, and the surrounding areas.