Becoming the victim of a truck accident is devastating. It can injure and even kill victims, leaving families with up to hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. Yet during claims proceedings, it is sometimes overlooked that truckers may be liable for losses they have caused in accidents after violating certain regulations that they must adhere to. Among these include hours of service and the amount of time that one can operate a commercially designated truck without sleep. Learn more about liability in accidents by reaching out to a San Bernardino truck accident attorney at the Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg today.
What Rules Must A Commercial Truck Driver Follow In CA?
State and federal laws require that truck drivers operate within certain hours to protect the safety of other automobile operators on the road. This is commonly described as the hours of service rule. This set of regulations was constructed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA for short, to restrict the amount of time a truck driver can legally operate a commercial truck and a single shift. This is done to prevent excess fatigue or drowsiness and decrease the number of potential accidents that may occur as a result of driving abnormally long shifts.
Some of the rules required are as followed:
- For every eight consecutive hours on the road, a semi-truck operator must take a break for at least 30 minutes.
- If a driver is transporting property (such as goods like food, merchandise, etc.) they can only legally operate their truck for 11 hours in a single day after having 10 consecutive hours off duty.
- A driver transporting passengers may only drive their commercially-licensed truck 10 hours in a single day after having eight consecutive hours of break.
- Over the course of a calendar week, semi-truck operators are only permitted to work 60 hours. In an eight-day period, they are able to work up to – but not over – 70 hours.
If any of these rules are violated, they may suffer consequences from governmental agencies. Initially, they may not be able to operate their trucks until they have accumulated enough time on break to become compliant with the hours of service rule. Companies allowing truck drivers to bypass this rule may be fined up to tens of thousands of dollars and penalized safety ratings, negatively impacting their business.
The SoCal Firm For All Your Roadway Accident Needs
The reason the hours of service roll is so important is that it is designed to protect other motorists on the roadway. Thus, being involved in an accident with a truck driver and/or company that has violated the hours of service rule would largely make them liable for the accident at hand as they may be operating their large, commercial vehicles in a drowsy or impaired state.
For this reason, it is imperative that the victim of a truck accident has a competent and experienced San Bernardino truck accident attorney on their side. Reach out to one today by clicking here or calling 310-997-0904 today for a free consultation with one of our lawyers at the Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg where we have successfully won millions of dollars in roadway accident compensation.