Federal Trucking Regulations That Can Impact Your Personal Injury Claim

Our Houston 18-wheeler accident and injury attorneys at the Hollingsworth Law Firm know that crashes involving semi-trucks are common occurrences in Texas. Unfortunately, these crashes often lead to catastrophic injuries that could have been prevented if the truck drivers, trucking company, or other third party liable for the crash followed Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations.

The FMSCA is the lead federal government agency responsible for regulating and providing safety oversight of commercial motor vehicles and aims to reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a crash with a commercial vehicle, knowledge of federal trucking laws is critical in assessing who is liable for the accident. We can help.

Federal Trucking Regulations

What are the Most Common Federal Regulation Violations That Lead to Semi-Truck Accidents in Texas?

Our Texas truck accident lawyers know extensively about the state and federal laws applicable to commercial truck accidents and how drivers, companies, and third parties violate these regulations.

The most common federal regulation violations include:

Federal Hours of Service Regulations

Hours of service regulations were implemented to prevent dangerous truck driver fatigue and reduce drowsy driving truck accidents.

Hours of service regulations prohibit drivers from:

  • Driving for over eight hours without taking at least 30 minutes of uninterrupted rest time.
  • Driving for more than 11 cumulative hours after ten consecutive hours off-duty.
  • Driving after 60 hours of on-duty time over seven consecutive workdays or after 70 hours over eight straight workdays.
  • Driving beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming on duty.

The driver’s logs must accurately reflect the driver’s activities and comply with the hours of service regulations. With the advent of electronic logging devices (ELDs), many commercial vehicles are now equipped with digital systems that automatically record driving time and other relevant data, replacing traditional paper logs. However, the requirement for accurate record-keeping remains the same.

Truck Maintenance Regulations

Commercial drivers and trucking companies are responsible for regularly maintaining and inspecting their trucks to ensure they operate safely with each trip. That includes systematically inspecting, repairing, and maintaining all commercial vehicles, including parts and accessories.

The driver or maintenance provider may be liable for the crash if the truck is not mechanically stable or adequately maintained.

Restrictions on Drug and Alcohol Use

Any driver under the influence of alcohol or drugs can put themselves and others at risk. However, when an impaired driver is behind the wheel of a potentially 80,000-pound truck, people are going to get hurt.

This is why the blood alcohol content (BAC) for commercial vehicle drivers is .04% — half the BAC limit for non-commercial drivers.

In addition, it violates FMSCA regulations for trucking companies to:

  • Hire drivers with known records of drug- and alcohol-related convictions.
  • Fail to require drug testing before they employ commercial drivers.
  • Fail to require alcohol and drug testing after an accident.

Contact Our Houston Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you have been injured in an accident caused by a semi-truck driver or trucking company’s negligence, contact our dedicated Houston personal injury lawyers at the Hollingsworth Law Firm today by calling (713)-637-4560 or contact us online for a free case evaluation.

Our skilled bilingual personal injury lawyers and support staff represent clients throughout Texas on a contingency basis, so you never pay any legal fees unless we win your case.

If you are ready to fight for the compensation you deserve, so are we. Let us take the lead.

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About Hollingsworth Law Firm

Our aggressive personal injury trial attorneys at the Hollingsworth Law Firm are committed to fighting for the compensation you deserve. If you are the victim of an automobile accidentairplane accidentworkplace injury or other catastrophic injury, you need legal advice from a personal injury attorney with proven results you can trust. Our dedicated legal team is proud to represent clients across the state of Texas. WE WILL START FIGHTING FOR YOUR RIGHTS TODAY!

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