Most semi-truck and other trucking accidents are caused when truck drivers or their employers fail to follow trucking regulations established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) or state traffic laws. Listed below are some of the most common types of violations that cause accidents.
Hours of Service Violations
Perhaps one of the most notorious truck regulation violations is the Hours of Service (HOS) violation. HOS limits a trucker's driving time by requiring resting breaks and off-duty time for sleep. Strict HOS regulations were implemented by the FMCSA to reduce the number of fatigue-related (falling asleep at the wheel) truck accidents.
Many truck accidents are caused by a truck driver or employer's failure to perform frequent maintenance and repairs on the vehicle. Truck defects can lead to serious collisions. Some examples of hazardous truck defects include low tire pressure, bald/low-tread tires, broken head or tail lights, worn brake pads, defective rear guards, and more.
Hiring or Retaining an Unfit Driver
Employers are not allowed to hire drivers who have a history of violations that disqualify him or her from being employed as a commercial truck driver. In order to operate a CMV, a driver must possess a valid, non-revoked, commercial driver license (CDL). Any driver without a valid CDL or who has an offense on their record that would disqualify them from operating a truck should not be employed or should be let go from their current trucking position.
Drug or Alcohol Use
It is illegal (violation of North Carolina traffic law) for any driver to operate a motor vehicle with drugs or alcohol in their system which impairs their ability to drive safely. There is no measurable limit for drugs, however the maximum blood alcohol concentration is .04 percent for truckers. Any truck driver can be arrested and lose their license for a drug or alcohol violation, whether they were driving a semi-truck at the time or not.
Speed Limit Violations
Truck speed limits are set by state. In the state of North Carolina, truckers are usually limited to driving a maximum of 70mph. The size of commercial trucks, some weighing upwards of 80,000 pounds, can limit the truck's braking ability, which is why traveling over the designated speed limit is so dangerous for big rigs. Sudden braking while traveling at a high speed can cause truck rollover, which is especially dangerous if the truck was carrying unsecure cargo.
You can find more information about the firm's truck accident legal team at www.carolinatrucklawyer.com.
If you or someone you love has been involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler, big rig, box truck, semi-truck or any other type of commercial motor vehicle, you may benefit from the legal representation of a North Carolina truck accident lawyer at Nagle & Associates, P.A. With our firm, you get the benefit of an attorney who:
- Is a former claims adjuster
- Is a former insurance defense attorney
- Has won millions of dollars for accident victims
An added benefit to contacting our firm is that we have law offices all throughout North Carolina, in locations such as Winston-Salem, Raleigh, Hickory, Wilmington, Asheville, and Charlotte. To learn more about how our firm can help you after being hit by a commercial truck, call us today for a free consultation!
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