The Regulations of the Trucking Industry… and the Dangers
Like in any situation with a driver on the road, there are certain laws that must be followed by the trucking industry to ensure others on the road are safe. Federal regulations are in place for trucking company owners, truck drivers, and others in the industry to act in a manner that protects themselves and others.
It’s important for individuals within the industry to have a full understanding of the regulations, as well as follow them. Failure to do so can put the truck driver and others on the road in serious danger, including drivers, motorcycle riders, bicyclists, and pedestrians.
For individuals who may have been injured in a trucking accident, understanding if the cause was a potential violation of trucking regulations can help you understand where liability may exist. Here are some things to know about the regulations.
The Importance of Not Exceeding Weight Restrictions
In the trucking industry, there are specific weight restrictions by which the companies must abide by to prevent potential dangers. These restrictions vary and represent the total weight limit of the truck and the cargo.
Unfortunately, trucks are overloaded all the time when companies try to make a trip easier or more convenient by adding extra cargo. If the truck weighs too much, however, it can cause serious problems on the road and potential damage to the truck.
For instance, if a truck is too heavy, it can damage the connection between the truck and the trailer, especially on steep grades on which the truck is traveling uphill. It can also cause damage to roads that have a specific resistance and weight limits that detail how heavy vehicles can be when traveling on those roads.
What Happens When a Trailer is Loaded Unevenly?
When an employee is tasked with loading the trailer with the cargo, they must ensure that everything is loaded properly in a manner that distributes the weight evenly. This means ensuring that each side is even, as well as the front of the trailer and the back of the trailer.
Uneven trailer loads in which the majority of the weight is on one side of the trailer can cause the truck to turn over on its side in high winds or when the truck takes a sharper corner.
The Hours of Service Regulations
There are significant issues caused on the road any time a driver is fatigued and operating their vehicle. In the trucking industry, this is a serious problem often caused by individuals working for far longer than they should during one shift or not getting a significant break.
There are federal regulations called the Hours of Service which details how long a driver may work, how long their breaks must be, and the amount of days they are able to work straight. Unfortunately, these regulations are not followed.
Truck drivers may lie on job logs in order to reach destinations within a desired timeline. Trucking companies may encourage the drivers to go beyond the Hours of Service Regulations in order to meet deadlines that they may have promised to a customer.
The Dangers of Violating Trucking Regulations
When any regulation in the trucking industry is violated, it can pose a number of different threats to others on the road. For instance, if someone drives beyond the allowable hours, they can become fatigued, lose control of their vehicle, and cause a serious collision.
These accidents often result in catastrophic injuries and the victim may have to endure the pain and suffering for an extended time period. It’s important for these injured parties to recognize they have rights and legal options to potentially take action.
At Hudson King, our team has extensive experience in these types of situations and we have handled a number of trucking accident cases involving violations of industry regulations. When this happens, it’s considered negligence and the responsible party should be held accountable.
Our South Georgia trucking accident attorneys work hard to help you protect your rights after a serious collision. Trust that we’ll keep your best interests at the top of our priority list and work to help you pursue the most favorable outcome possible.
Contact us at (229) 515-8585 to discuss your potential case.
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