Federal regulations give truck drivers specific rules regarding how many hours can be spent behind the wheel and for meal breaks, sleep, and required rest.
To make sure that truck drivers are following federal trucking regulations, truck drivers are required to enter the details into a driver’s log. The trucking company is also required to keep records of the engine operation data on the black box recorder placed in the cab of the truck.
The Dangers of Truck Driver Fatigue
In spite of strict federal regulations, truck driver fatigue is responsible for causing around 20-40 percent of truck accidents according to the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board. Truck drivers generally never admit that they were too fatigued to drive or that they fell asleep behind the wheel. The evidence of improper driver supervision and driver fatigue can be verified by checking the truck driver’s log against the engine data on the truck’s black box.
If you or someone close to you has been injured in a truck accident, it may have been caused by driver fatigue or another violation of the federal regulations on rest and sleep. In order to prove this, you may need the services of a Chicago personal injury attorney from Willens Law Offices. We have extensive experience investigating the causes of truck accidents and helping victims recover appropriate damages for the losses they have suffered.
Causes of Truck Driver Fatigue
Sleep deprivation and fatigue can impair a driver’s ability to operate a truck properly and safely. Drivers who sleep behind the wheel or close their eyes even for a few seconds can veer off or swerve off the road, leading to a head-on collision or other serious types of truck accidents. The main causes of truck driver fatigue include:
- sleep deprivation
- excessive overtime, weekly, and daily work hours
- unrealistic schedules and deadlines set by the trucking company
- multiple jobs of the truck driver and off duty commitments
- personal or health problems that may limit sleep or cause fatigue
Effects of Driver Fatigue
- loss of concentration
- reduced awareness
- slower reaction times
- poor alertness
Chicago Personal Injury Lawsuits
Truck companies and commercial insurance companies understand that if they lose a case in court, they will have to part with millions of dollars. They may try to close the case quickly with a low financial settlement. Do not accept a settlement offer before consulting a Chicago truck accident lawyer. Call Willens Law Offices at (312) 957-4166. We will work to protect your legal rights and help get you the compensation to cover your medical expenses, loss of income, rehabilitation, and pain and suffering.