Sleep Deprived Truck Drivers
In the wake of the June 7th truck accident that critically injured actor Tracy Morgan and took the life of another passenger, increased attention has been paid to rules regarding mandatory rest for truck drivers. The truck driver who caused that accident had not slept for 24 hours which, sadly, is not an uncommon occurrence in the trucking industry.
Identifying driver fatigue as a leading cause of truck accidents, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) instituted rules last year that limited drive time to 70 hours per week. These rules also required at least 36 hours of rest following a 70 hour workweek – a period that must include two overnights.
New FMCSA rules were based on data collected from literally hundreds of studies conducted by state, federal, collegiate, and nonprofit organizations. Tragically, the Senate Appropriations Committee has turned a blind eye to all available data and suspended limitations on drive time until “further study” can be conducted.
Make no mistake: suggesting further study is needed to identify fatigue as a leading cause of truck accidents defies reason, science, and common sense. And it does all of this at the expense of the safety of everyone on the road.
While the Senate Appropriations Committee may think more studies are needed before the gross negligence of the trucking industry can be reined in, our Vermont truck accident attorneys do not. If you or a loved one are injured by a fatigued trucker we are prepared to fight tooth and nail, taking your case as far as necessary to ensure you and your family get the justice you are due.
To schedule a free consultation with an experienced Vermont truck accident attorney, please contact the Law Offices of Van Dorn & Curtiss today. We fight tirelessly for victims of negligent truckers throughout Vermont and New Hampshire from our offices in Orford and Concord.