Driver fatigue is a primary cause of trucking accidents. Nevertheless, in December, truck safety advocates asked a federal court to block a ruling by the Transportation Department that permits commercial truckers to work longer hours. The Bush Administration had increased the number of hours, from 10 to11, that truck drivers could work without a break. Drivers are also allowed to drive up to 70 hours a week.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Web site, the rules pertaining to the hours of service for truck drivers are as follows:

  • Commercial Motor Vehicle (“CMV”) drivers can only drive 11 hours maximum after 10 hours off duty.
  • CMV drivers cannot drive after the 14th hour on duty.
  • CMV drivers cannot drive after 60/70 hours on duty within 7/8 workdays in a row.

Truck safety advocates were able to convince a federal court to block the implementation of the rule concerning 11 hours of continuous driving. However, The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration was still able to implement an interim rule that mirrors the one blocked by a federal court. Advocates are now challenging the interim rule in federal court.

The consequences of a trucking accident can be catastrophic. Because of a tractor-trailer’s size and weight, the injuries and damages resulting from accidents involving this type of motor vehicle tend to be more severe than injuries involving car accidents. The injuries in truck accidents are often serious, including traumatic brain injury (TBI), closed head injury, spinal cord injuries, amputations, paralysis, internal injuries, neck and back damage, and even death.

Over the years, our firm has helped many of our clients who have been the victims of truck accidents. If you or a member of your family has suffered serious injury in a commercial trucking accident, and you would like a lawyer to review your case, please contact the personal injury law firm of Rosen Louik & Perry in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to arrange a free consultation.

Hours of Service Regulations

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