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Commercial Truck Driver Negligence

Some of the most devastating types of motor vehicle collisions are those that involve commercial trucks. These vehicles outmatch the size of passenger vehicle by far, making a collision between the two potentially devastating for the occupants of the smaller vehicle. To put this in perspective, a fully-loaded commercial truck can weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds while the average passenger vehicle only weighs about 4,000 pounds. While accidents can be the fault of either party, rampant negligence in the trucking industry is often the cause. If this describes an accident you were involved in, then you may be able to secure representation from a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer from our firm.

Federal Trucking Regulations: FMCSA

In order to decrease the amount of accidents that occur on U.S. roads and highways, the Department of Transportation enacted laws through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). One major requirement of this legislation was that, in order to operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV), one would have to pass the test (written and hands-on) to obtain their commercial driver's license (CDL). This is just one way that the DOT can help ensure safety. Unfortunately, many trucking companies and drivers fail to adhere to these rules, and many accidents are caused as a result.

Some of the most common causes of trucking accidents include the following:

Fatigued Drivers (HOS Failure to Comply)
Shocking numbers of truck drivers admit to falling asleep at the wheel while operating their CMVs. To remedy this problem the FMCSA has enacted Hours of Service (HOS) legislation in hopes of lessening the occurrence of tired drivers. Although drivers have mandated resting breaks and "off time" periods, many do not take them. One reason could be that a driver needs to get his cargo to its destination on time, so they skip their break. For whatever reason it occurs, fatigued driving is dangerous and against the law.

Mechanical Failures
CMVs must be in good working order if they are operating on roads and highways. To enforce this, DOT and state highway patrol have implemented truck scales or "weigh stations" that inspect trucks. If a truck is in violation and needs repair, the driver may be issued a citation. Unfortunately, many drivers continue to drive despite these citations and warnings. Common mechanical failures include tire blowout and underride accidents.

License Fraud
To drive a CMV, an individual must possess a CDL that is not otherwise suspended or revoked. Some drivers commit something known as license fraud in order to obtain a CDL without actually taking or passing the examination. License fraud is actually incredibly prevalent, and investigations are pending in multiple states.

Distracted Driving
Driving while texting, eating, changing the radio station and the like can prove incredibly dangerous. Although changing the radio station is not illegal, it can take a driver's eyes and attention off of the road and cause an accident. Texting and driving is also illegal for commercial truckers.

Enlist Our Los Angeles Injury Lawyers

If you or a loved one was injured in an accident that involved a commercial truck, you may be suffering from incredibly serious injuries that require extensive medical treatment. Martinian & Associates is here to see that you get the compensation you deserve. If you were not responsible for the accident, then we will fight to see that liability doesn't wrongfully get shifted on to you.

For more information about truck accidents, claims and lawsuits, please do not hesitate to contact a Los Angeles truck accident lawyer from our firm.

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