What are the Most Common Semi-Truck Regulation Violations that Lead to Accidents?
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA, regulates the trucking industry and monitors freight transit safety standards across the United States.
Every trucking company and truck driver in the country must adhere to the FMCSA’s regulations to ensure they are safely and legally operating.
When these standards and regulations are violated, accidents can — and will — occur in New Mexico and across the nation.
When they do, our New Mexico truck accident attorneys will take the lead in pursuing the negligent party, or combination of parties, including the truck’s driver, the trucking company, or another third-party for our clients’ financial recovery.
What FMCSA Semi-Truck Regulation Violations Occur Most Often?
Truck regulation violations are very serious breaches of public safety.
The most common occurrences that lead to truck accidents in New Mexico include, but are not limited to:
- Hiring Regulations
A semi-truck driver must obtain and maintain a commercial driver’s license to ensure they are properly trained to drive to operate and control these large vehicles.
Failing to report license suspensions or disqualifications are violations of trucking regulations.
Likewise, under the FMCSA regulations, truck driving applicants with a history of driving under the influence, speeding, reckless driving, traffic violations, or other issues like medical conditions or poor health that make them unsafe behind the wheel of such a large vehicle is prohibited from hire as a driver of an 18-wheeler.
- Hours of Service Regulations
The FMCSA dictates the amount of time truck drivers can perform under the Hours of Service Regulations, which limit how long the driver may operate the semi without breaks.
Those regulations require semi-truck drivers to:
- Take at least a 30-minute break every eight hours
- Take a 10-hour break after 14 hours on duty, which still requires taking the required breaks which means a driver cannot drive more than 11 hours
- Semi-truck drivers cannot drive more than 60 hours in seven days
- Once the 60 hours is up, truck drivers must remain off-duty for a minimum of 34 hours
Hours of service violations occur more often than they should, as drivers can easily alter their driving logs to appear as though they are following the required guidelines.
- Semi-Truck Loading Regulations
Large trucks are limited to a combined total weight of 80,000 pounds for interstate travel, and the FMCSA also stipulates cargo must be loaded and secured.
When these rules are violated, the large vehicle may be too heavy to safely control or stop, which can lead to jackknifing and catastrophic collisions without notice.
- Maintenance Regulations
The maintenance standards outlined by the FMCSA are designed for everyone on our roadways’ safety.
Since trucks travel thousands of miles every year, tires, brakes, lights, and other systems must be consistently maintained to ensure their safe travel.
If you have been hurt in a truck accident in New Mexico, contact our New Mexico Truck Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Samuel I. Kane, P.A. by calling (575) 222-0472 to schedule a free consultation today to determine who was at fault for your collision, so we can pursue the proper person or parties responsible for your injuries.