Unfortunately, a fatigued driver on the roadways is similar in many ways to a driver that is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. A fatigued driver experiences diminished perception, reaction time and other variables that normally ensure safe driving. As a result, fatigued drivers are more likely to cause serious accidents.
It depends on the circumstances, but both a fatigued truck driver and a negligent trucking company may be liable for the harm caused by a truck accident. The dangers of driving while fatigued are well known, which is why truck drivers are required to follow federal trucking regulations designed to prevent truck driver fatigue. Regulations include taking required sleep breaks; taking required rest breaks before conducting other truck-related business; and keeping written logs that track both rest and sleep breaks.
In some circumstances, truck drivers may keep two log books to conceal their failure to abide by required rest breaks. In other circumstances and depending on the relationship between the parties, trucking companies can be liable for negligence if they place pressure on drivers not to take rest and sleep breaks to meet unreasonable deadlines and company demands. When victims have been injured or otherwise harmed by either truck driver or trucking company negligence, legal resources are available to help them.
Truck accidents, such as those caused by a fatigued truck driver, can cause devastating injuries and harm to victims. Because of the often catastrophic nature of truck accidents, victims need to be familiar with the legal resources available to protect them and help them recover compensation for their physical, financial and emotional damages.