New York Truck Driver Fatigue Accident Lawyer
Long-haul trucking is a difficult job. Truck drivers face long, punishing hours on the road, often with little distraction or entertainment for extended stretches through the countryside. Even compared to other drivers on the road, long-haul truckers are at especially high risk of either succumbing to fatigue or self-medicating with various substances to stay awake and alert. Federal regulations limit the number of hours a commercial driver can be on duty at a stretch, but not every driver follows the rules. When a large truck driver stays behind the wheel past the point of drowsiness, a catastrophic accident is not far off.
If you or someone you care about has been hurt or killed in a fatigue-related 18-wheeler truck crash or other traffic accident anywhere in the Hudson Valley area, including Kingston, Marlboro and Ulster, contact a zealous truck accident attorney at Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP, for a consultation with one of our attorneys. We’ll pursue your case against the biggest freight companies, insurance companies, and any other parties who should be held responsible. We’ll fight for your right to compensation for your injuries, including your pain and suffering, medical expenses, and other legal damages.
Trucker Fatigue and Hours of Service Rules
Truck driver fatigue is a very real and prevalent problem. To combat the risk of commercial truck accidents caused by driver fatigue, the federal government has imposed “hours of service” regulations that dictate how many hours truckers are allowed to operate in between rests. Truck drivers who flout these rules and freight companies that encourage drivers to “push through” and ignore the regulations create a serious hazard for everyone else on the road.
Current hours-of-service rules imposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration for long-haul truckers include:
- Drivers are limited to a maximum of 11 hours of driving after 10 consecutive hours off-duty
- Truckers cannot work past the 14th consecutive hour on duty, after 10 hours off-duty
- Drivers must take a 30-minute driving break after eight cumulative hours of driving
- Drivers may not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. The 7/8 day period restarts after 34 consecutive hours off duty
Certain special exceptions apply, and drivers who carry passengers have slightly different rules. Otherwise, commercial truck drivers are bound by these rules. Truckers who ignore these rules and employers that either encourage or turn a blind eye to violations are subject to civil penalties as well as liability to anyone hurt in a resulting accident.
Zealous Truck Accident Lawyers Holding Drowsy Truckers and Freight Companies Liable
The hours-of-service regulations exist for a reason. Unfortunately, truckers may be encouraged to ignore the limits because they are in a hurry, they want to complete more jobs, or because their employer encourages them to do so in order to earn more business. The seasoned truck accident lawyers at Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP are ready to help you hold drowsy truck drivers and irresponsible trucking companies liable for accidents they have caused.
Our truck accident legal team has decades of combined experience holding negligent drivers, insurance companies, big corporations, tractor-trailer manufacturers, and other parties liable for the harm suffered by accident victims. We’ll investigate the circumstances of your accident, determine if any regulations were violated, build your case, and make sure the appropriate parties are forced to compensate you appropriately for the devastation they’ve caused.
Call a Dedicated New York Truck Accident Lawyer for Assistance With Your Hudson Valley Fatigued Truck Driver Claim
For a free consultation on your possible commercial truck accident claim, contact the seasoned truck accident attorneys at the New York personal injury law firm Rusk, Wadlin, Heppner & Martuscello, LLP, in Kingston at 845-331-4100 or in Marlboro at 845-236-4411.