Commercial truck accidents require an additional level of investigation beyond the investigation done for car or other noncommercial vehicle accidents. Commercial truck accidents can involve the following:
- Commercial truck drivers
- Bus drivers
- Moving companies
- Semi trucks and 18-wheelers
- Hazardous materials haulers
- Overweight or oversize rigs
- Construction vehicles
- Mining trucks
- Farm trucks
- Delivery vans
- Maintenance or utility vehicles
The Rules for Commercial Truck Drivers
Commercial truck drivers are required to comply with certain federal statutes and regulations, including what are known as hours of service (HOS) regulations. These regulations govern a number of areas, including the number of hours that a commercial truck driver may drive in one day, and the number of hours of rest required between driving. Commercial truck drivers must also keep a detailed log covering various driving-related activities (or they must use approved electronic devices that track driving activities).
In many cases, commercial truck accidents are caused by driver fatigue. Driver fatigue can happen for a number of reasons, including not getting proper rest or a medical condition.
When a commercial vehicle is involved in an accident, it is important to not only fully investigate the causes of the accident, but also to determine whether the commercial vehicle driver is in compliance with HOS and other regulations. To make this determination, it is important to obtain all of the relevant documents, and to hire experts such as accident reconstructionists to determine all causes and factors that have led to the accident.
Commercial Truck Driving Companies
In addition to rules and regulations governing commercial truck driving, often commercial truck drivers are employed by a company which may be legally liable for the actions of its employees. These companies are often found to have a legal duty to ensure that those who they hire are competent drivers. In some cases, companies may hire drivers who have serious driving records, including driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Drivers may also be employed who may be driving on a suspended or revoked license.
Because the truck company may have legal responsibility for its driver, it is important to carefully investigate the background driving history of commercial drivers who may have caused an accident.
Find Out How We Help Injured Clients
If you or a family member has been injured in a commercial vehicle accident, call the lawyers at Fein, Flynn & Associates to find out how we may be able to help. We will meet with you at no charge, and if we are retained, we will do so on a contingency basis. This means that you will not do owe us any fees unless and until we recover for you.
There is no obligation for this meeting. We can learn about your accident and the injuries sustained, and advise you of the opportunities that may be available to recover for your injuries and damages.