A number of my previous blog posts have discussed the dangers of sharing the road with large, semi-trucks and helpful tips for safely doing so. One of the most dangerous conditions is truck drivers who are exhausted because they are driving in excess of the maximum number of hours permitted by law. However, a new law may help reduce or completely eliminate this unlawful practice.
Truck drivers, carriers and shippers in Colorado now have to abide by a new regulation enacted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) earlier this year, which requires the installation of electronic logging devices in all trucks. These devices will automatically and digitally log hour many hours a trucker drives for at any given time by sensing when a truck's motor is running and how many miles were driven. The data collected by these devices will be used to report the number of driving hours' truckers have driven, as required by federal law.
The new, digital devices will replace the mandatory handwritten log journals previously maintained by truck drivers to show that they did not drive in excess of the maximum hours allowed. The problem with these journals was that truck drivers often times altered these logs or kept two (2) separate journals (one containing actual hours driven, the other containing falsified data) in order to prove compliance with federal law when, in fact, these drivers were driving too many hours. Some truckers drive over the number of hours permitted to make extra money, while others have been forced to do so by their employers or risk losing their jobs.
The FMCSA's new law requires all truck drivers, their employers, carriers and shippers to implement installation of the electronic logging devices by the beginning of 2018. The only trucks exempt from the new requirement are dump trucks and those manufactured prior to 2000. Officials with the FMCSA hope to eradicate falsified trucker logs and the dangers posed by fatigued and over-worked truck drivers.
As the FMCSA points out, large commercial vehicles and semi-trucks are so dangerous due to their massive size and weight. Motorists involved in collisions with trucks often times sustain very serious, lifelong disabling injuries and even death. Operating large trucks when exhausted is a recipe for disaster not only for the truck driver, but for everyone else sharing the road.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident with a large truck, it is critical to hire a personal injury lawyer in your jurisdiction who knows the law. At the Law Office of Jeremy Rosenthal, our knowledgeable personal injury lawyers have decades of experience representing clients injured in all sorts of car accidents, including those with large commercial vehicles. We can review your case, discover if the truck driver who injured you was in violation of any FMCSA rules and regulations, and fight for the compensation you deserve.
Call us today for a free consultation at (303) 825 – 2223 or visit us online.