The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration establishes safe operating requirements to help keep the public safe
Author: Attorney Jason Macri
Though they are extremely dangerous, trucks are vitally important to the nation’s economy. The movement of goods along our highways and streets is an absolute necessity in order to ensure that those goods make their way into local stores and eventually, American homes. Because there is no possible way to keep these trucks separate from other vehicles on the road, we all must learn to co-exist while traveling. The FMCSA has established trucking rules and continuously promotes truck safety in an effort to protect the public from this ever-present danger.
The FMCSA requires that all truck drivers have the knowledge and skills necessary to operate a commercial vehicle such as a semi-truck. Each driver must possess and demonstrate the ability to safely operate the vehicle and have command over every aspect of the vehicle’s movement. The vehicle must also be frequently tested and inspected to ensure that it is safe and roadworthy.
The FMCSA also places restrictions on the amount of time that a driver can operate a commercial truck without taking a break. The FMCSA’s “Hours of Service” regulations indicate that a commercial truck driver may only drive a particular amount of time without taking a time-specified break. The amount of time that a driver may operate a commercial vehicle without a break depends on many factors such as what type of load the truck is carrying, the total amount of time the driver has been operating the vehicle and the amount of time the driver has previously spent on break. The goal is to ensure that the commercial truck driver is well-rested and not sleep-deprived while operating the vehicle.
Bad weather is inevitable regardless of the season. Rain, snow or ice can severely impact a driver’s ability to safely operate a vehicle. The FMCSA requires that all operators of commercial trucks must use extreme caution when operating a commercial truck in hazardous conditions such as rain, snow, ice, sleet, fog, mist, dust or smoke. The rules indicate that the driver must reduce speed in those conditions and use extreme caution.
There are many more rules contained within the FMCSA, all tailored toward keeping the public safe. If a truck driver violates the rules contained within the FMSCA and causes a crash, he or she may be liable for any injury or type of damage caused. In Florida, the driver’s employer will be liable for injuries and damages caused by their driver as well. If you or a loved-one have been injured in a truck crash, call the Law Office of Dell & Schaefer. Our attorneys have years of experience going up against truck drivers, trucking companies and their insurance companies to ensure that our client’s benefit from every available form of compensation.