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The Sumner Law Group LLC The Sumner Law Group LLC

New Trucking Regulations Have Been Enacted by the FMCSA


According to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the country experiences about 500,000 trucking accidents a year. Of these, about 5,000 result in a fatality. This means that approximately one out of every eight traffic fatalities is caused by, or involves, a truck. For this reason, the Sumner Law Group, LLC is pleased to see that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has taken measures to modify existing regulations. As of the July 1, 2013, truck drivers will be required to abide by a new set of rules and regulations. While they were previously allowed to work a maximum of 82 hours per week, this has since been changed to 70 hours. Additionally, they must now take a 30-minute break within the first eight hours of driving—which aims to reduce the number of fatigued truck drivers out on the road.

If a driver reaches the maximum number of work hours for the week, they can resume driving if they rest for 34 consecutive hours—which must include at least two nights of rest from 1:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. It still remains that they cannot exceed 11 hours of driving per day, however, as they would be strictly limited to a 14-hour workday. While these improved regulations may not prevent all future trucking accidents, our firm hopes that they will ultimately cut down the number of collisions that are caused by driver inattention and fatigue. Since drivers are expected to haul 10,000+ pounds of weight each and every day, for hours on end, it is far too easy to lose focus. When this happens, there is no telling how much damage they can cause to a much smaller vehicle and the passengers inside.

Having represented numerous cases of this nature, the legal team at the Sumner Law Group, LLC has witnessed the devastating aftermath of far too many trucking accidents. Just recently, Attorney Brent Sumner was hired by a man, G.R., who had been catastrophically injured in a tractor trailer collision. While traveling down Interstate 70 in Effingham, IL, he had no time to stop before slamming into the back of a truck that had stopped in the middle of the highway. Upon inspection, the tractor trailer was cited for violating several different Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations. It was for this reason, and numerous others, that Mr. Sumner was able to successfully secure a $2.2 million jury verdict on behalf of G.R.—which served as suitable compensation for the harm that he had suffered.

If you or someone you love has been injured under similar circumstances, you should not hesitate to find out how our Columbia personal injury attorney can assist you in pursuing damages. Call today at (573) 287-3178 or submit a free case evaluation form online to learn more.