Truck Driver Fatigue Accidents
When a truck driver is operating a large commercial truck while tired or fatigued it is extremely dangerous and can result in devastating traffic accidents, catastrophic injuries, property damage, and wrongful death.
Federal and State Regulations
Those who drive commercial trucks are required to abide by federal and state regulations which limit the number of allowable driving hours per week. Additionally, commercial truck drivers are required to take rest periods and breaks at regular intervals. If a truck driver does not adhere to these guidelines, truck driver fatigue is likely to occur. If a truck driver causes a traffic accident due to driving while tired or fatigued, the injured party may seek to recover compensation for reckless or negligent driving conduct.
Factors Involving Truck Driver Fatigue (Drowsy Driving)
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that there are several factors that can cause driver fatigue (drowsy driving). They are:
- Loss of sleep – a driver who has not allowed him or herself enough hours of restful sleep is more likely to drive while fatigued.
- The number of miles and/or hours driven – As a driver increases his or her hours or miles over the highway the more likely he or she is to become fatigued or drowsy.
- Driving without taking proper intervals of rest increases the risk of traffic accidents.
- Driving under the influence of medications that cause sedation (whether prescribed or not).
- Sleep disorders– drivers may not be aware they suffer from narcolepsy or sleep apnea.
- Driving under the influence of alcohol increases drowsiness.
Recovering Compensation for Injuries Resulting from Truck Driver Fatigue
When a truck driver’s negligent conduct causes an accident, the injured victim may seek compensation. Compensatory damages are designed to help the injured party become as whole as is possible to the condition he or she was prior to the accident. Compensation may include costs of medical care, loss of income, pain and suffering, property damage, future earnings and more. In cases involving extreme recklessness, punitive damages are likely to be sought. An example of this may be if a truck driver falls asleep while behind the wheel due to being under the influence of drugs and or alcohol.
If you were seriously injured in a truck accident and you suspect it was a result of truck driver fatigue, contact an experienced Sacramento truck accident attorney.
Experienced Sacramento Truck Accident and Wrongful Death Attorney
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Truck Accident Attorney. If you or someone you care about has been seriously injured in an accident involving a large commercial truck, please contact me as soon as you are able at (916) 921-6400 for free and friendly advice. If you are calling outside of the greater Sacramento region, please contact me free of toll at (800) 404-5400 for free and friendly advice.
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Source of Accidents Involving Truck Driver Fatigue – http://www.nhtsa.gov/
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