Truck accidents and regulation complexities

Hours of Service regulations for truck drivers are federal regulations that limit the number consecutive hours a truck driver can drive. It’s a fact that truck driver fatigue can cause truck accidents. For this reason, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) devised rules to restrict consecutive driving hours.

What Trucking Regulations Have to Do with a Truck Accident Case?

When you are injured due to a truck collision, proving the truck driver was at fault or mostly at fault is pivotal for winning the case. If the truck driver violated the hours of service regulations, it is highly possible that fatigued driving contributed to causing the truck accident. Your attorney can provide the violation as evidence when establishing fault for the accident case.

What Are the Hours of Service Regulations for Truck Drivers?

The FMCSA has established the following regulations for two types of driver categories:

Property-Carrying Drivers

  • 11-hour driving limit. After 10 consecutive hours off duty, drivers can drive a maximum of 11 hours.
  • 14-hour limit. Drivers cannot drive beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming on duty, following 10 consecutive hours of being off duty.
  • 30-minute driving break. When drivers have driven for 8 cumulative hours, they must take a 30 consecutive minute break without interruption.
  • 60/70-hour Limit. After 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days, the driver may not continue driving. The driver must go off duty for 34 or more consecutive hours.
  • Adverse driving conditions. When encountering adverse driving conditions, drivers can extend the 11-hour and 14-hour maximum driving limits up to 2 hours.

Passenger-Carry Drivers

  • 10-hour driving limit. After 8 hours of remaining off duty, a driver may drive a maximum of 10 hours.
  • 15-hour limit. After having been on duty for 15 hours, drivers may not drive. They must remain 8 consecutive hours off duty and the off-duty time is not included in the 15-hour period.
  • 60/70-hour limit. The driver may not drive after 60/70 hours of on duty driving in a 7/8 consecutive day period.

Our Firm Has Extensive Experience Handling Truck Accident Cases

The Law Office of Michael R. De La Paz has represented clients throughout Texas from Longview to Lubbock and from Arlington to South San Padre. We offer a free consultation to discuss your accident and can help you protect your rights.