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Truck Driver Fell Asleep at the Wheel: NM Trucking Accident Lawyer Explains Hours of Service Violations

Understanding What the Hours of Service Violations from our NM Trucking Accident Lawyer When a Truck Driver Fell Asleep at the Wheel

Large commercial vehicles like 18 wheelers, semi tractor trailers, big rigs, tandem trailers, delivery vans, and other box trucks are inherently dangerous vehicles.  They are simply more difficult to maneuver, more difficult to start and stop, and more difficult to maintain.  This is why there is a special license which requires special training for it, including a written test, practice skills test, and shadowing another driver.  Sometime taught and stressed during trainings is to take enough rest and sleep time.  This is because one of the most dangerous things and commonly tragic instances is when a truck driver fell asleep at the wheel and causes a trucking accident.  

Here at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., our dedicated personal injury lawyer knows how dangerous and devastating it can be for a loved one to have suffered a serious personal injury as a result of a trucking accident or 18 wheeler wreck.  Our NM trucking accident lawyer in Albuquerque, New Mexico knows that victims who are seriously injured in a big rig wreck when a truck driver fell asleep at the wheel could be entitled to compensation for their pain and suffering, lost wages, lost future earnings, medical bills, loss of consortium, and other damages related to their motor vehicle accident.  Learn about the most common cause of truck drivers falling asleep at the wheel which is an hour of service violation here.

Hours of Service Rules under the FMCA

If a truck driver fell asleep at the wheel and caused a New Mexico trucking accident, there may have been a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) violation.  The FMCSA is a federal body which sets the minimum rules that truck drivers and trucking companies must comply with.  Many of these rules are safety in nature to keep innocent people from suffering avoidable harm.

One of the most common FMCSA regulations deals with hours of service.  Also known as HOS, these regulations are meant to prevent a truck driver from operating a motor vehicle fatigued or sleepy.  These regulations ensure that all motorists are not faced with sleepy or fatigued truck drivers.

But unfortunately, far too many truck drivers and trucking companies fail to take these regulations seriously.  If there is a violation of the hours of service regulations by the FMCSA, a NM trucking accident lawyer may be able to recover compensation for the victim and his or her family.

Some of the most common hours of service rules and regulations that need to be complied with include the following:

  • Shift clocks are in 24 hour windows, with 14 hours on duty and 10 hours off duty
  • Truck drivers may drive for a mimxim of 11 hours during a 14 hour shift
  • Truck drivers may drive a maximum of 8 hours before having a least a 30-minute rest
  • Truck drivers must have 3 hours of rest during a 14-hour on duty 
  • Truck drivers may not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in a 7/8 consecutive day window.

Were You Injured by a Truck Driver Who Fell Asleep at the Wheel?  We Can Help

If you or a loved one were seriously injured, or if a loved one was wrongfully killed by a truck driver who crossed the centerline, rear-end you, sideswiped you, or otherwise made an impact that made you think the truck driver fell asleep, call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. to learn how we can help you.  Our experienced Albuquerque trucking accident lawyers work hard for victims and the families to recover the compensation they need for their injuries, lost wages, and medical expenses.  Our dedicated bodily injury law firm does this by conducting full and thorough investigations, including into how  truck driver caused an accident.  If there is evidence that a truck driver was fatigued or violated the hours of service regulations by the FMCSA, we will fight back to protect a victims right.  Call us for a FREE consultation to learn how we can help you today.

We handle cases throughout New Mexico, including in Las Cruces, Rio Rancho, Santa Fe, Roswell, Farmington, Hobbs, Lordsburg, or anywhere else in the state, including Albuquerque where our law office is located. Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. by dialing (505) 883-5000 to learn how we can help.  You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here

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