Drowsy Driving Accident Lawyer in Los Angeles, CA
Did a Drowsy Driver Cause Your Accident?
Truckers have to drive a lot more than the rest of us. They drive long distances to deliver goods, sometimes to multiple states in one shift. Driving 10 or 14 hours at a time could cause any motorist to get fatigued and make mistakes. Since trucks are so much larger, they can cause more damage than your average car. Drowsy driving from a trucker could cost someone’s life.
To ensure that truck drivers are alert and are not overworked, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration put hours of service regulations into place. Their goal is to regulate how often each trucker drives to provide a safer environment for not only the trucker, but other people on the road as well.
What Are the Basic HOS Regulations?
Specific limitations are place on the amount of time a commercial trucker can drive, and the total hours that can be worked before the driver has to take a break. There is a 14-hour driving window limit and an 11-hour limit. The extra thee hours are supposed to include break times, stopping to get gas, loading/unloading, etc. Additionally, drivers have to be off duty for 10 hours before they can start another shift.
Do Truck Drivers Get Penalized for Not Following Safety Rules?
If a truck driver fails to follow HOS rules, it can (and often does) lead to a trucking accident. If you have been involved in a collision with a big rig, and there is record of the driver having violated the hours of service rules before, your attorney may be able to use that as evidence of past negligence, particularly if the trucking company failed to facilitate proper punishment for the violation.
Penalties for violating HOS rules include:
- Truck driver may be taken out of service until enough off-duty time has been accumulated.
- Local and state law enforcement officials may give truck driver a fine.
- The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration may charge a civil penalty on the driver or carrier, which could range from $1,000 to $11,000 (this amount is per violation and depends on severity of violation).
- Safety rating for the carrier can be downgraded if there is a pattern of violations taking place.
- Carriers may face federal criminal penalties if they or their drivers knowingly and willingly violate HOS regulations.
After a Truck Crash in L.A., Call a Truck Crash Lawyer
If you have been involved in a trucking accident, you will need an experienced law firm such as NOVIK LAW GROUP, A Professional Corporation, to handle your case. We will ensure that you get what you deserve and are not lowballed by the trucker’s insurance company. Companies know the high payout they will be responsible for if their driver is found at fault. They will have a legal team behind them to prevent that from happening, and you need a team as well to protect you. If you are not able to come to our Encino office due to your injuries, we will come to you personally.
We know that dealing with the physical, emotional, and financial stress of a car accident can be hard, but we are here to make this easier on you. We do not charge any upfront fees or retainers. We don’t get paid unless you recover money from the case, so do not worry about being able to afford a Los Angeles car accident attorney. Give our office a call at (818) 305-6041 for more information.
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