Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and Highway Safety
In the United States, any semi truck or other vehicle carrying freight on our nation's roads and highways is subject to the strict regulations and oversight of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This agency was originally a component of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) until January 2000, when it was created as part of the comprehensive Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999.
According to the department's official website, its mission is to improve the safety of commercial motor vehicles and save the lives of drivers, passengers and pedestrians sharing our roads with commercial vehicles.
Under FMCSA regulations, truck drivers, freight management and sectors involved in the movement of freight over our highways are required to follow strict regulations governing concerns such as:
- Truck driver training and skills
- Truck drivers' physical condition, sleep requirements and hours driving
- Drug and alcohol use
- Negligent driving, driver distractions and driver aggressiveness
- Unsafe stopping and pulling over
- Vehicle maintenance
- Load limitations and requirements
- Weather conditions
- Movement and loading of hazardous materials (hazmat)
Whenever a commercial vehicle is involved in an accident, the FMCSA investigates the circumstances to determine whether the driver and truck company adhered to the regulations. The cab of each truck includes a data recorder, often referred to as the black box, and truckers are required by law to fill out a logbook accurately on every trip. So-called logbook violations often result in truck companies being found liable for damages in accidents resulting in personal injury and death of other drivers and passengers in cars.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury or you have lost a family member in a fatal accident involving a commercial truck, it is important to talk to a personal injury lawyer who understands the FMCSA regulations. Time is important. Your attorney will need to begin an investigation to recover evidence immediately. Truck companies are required to keep their logbook and recorder information on file only for a certain amount of time. Many eliminate records and evidence immediately following an accident involving one of their trucks.
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Humphrey, Farrington & McClain is recognized as a prominent law firm representing victims who have been injured in truck accidents. Our law firm represents individuals throughout the United States, including in Illinois, California, Texas and Florida.
To set up a free consultation with one of our truck accident attorneys, contact us online or call 888-353-0491.