Although many truck drivers are very careful on the road, it’s hard to maintain safety standards if they are fatigued while driving.
Truckers are a hardworking bunch, driving long distances, sometimes without adequate rest to keep strict deadlines. Although many are among the safest drivers on our roads, it’s hard for them to maintain their usual safety standards when fatigued, which increases the likelihood of accidents.
If you happen to be in an accident with a fatigued truck driver, it might seem almost impossible to prove truck driver fatigue. However, our team of experienced lawyers how to determine and prove truck driver fatigue leading to the accident.
Pointing to the Time of the Accident
Truck drivers working past midnight until morning are more predisposed to fatigue, especially during the day. There’s a high likelihood that these drivers work all through the night and rest during the day. So if you find them driving during the day, they may be driving during their break and are likely fatigued.
Examining Police Reports
Police at the scene can tell whether someone is fatigued by looking for apparent signs of fatigue like eyebags, bloodshot eyes, and excessive yawning. Police are generally trained to note down these signs of fatigue in their police reports. In addition, sometimes, the responding officer may be called to testify, providing solid evidence that the truck driver was indeed tired.
Identifying Lack of Accident Avoidance
The most obvious sign that a trucker was either sleeping on the wheel or drowsy is a complete lack of accident avoidance. It’s natural for drivers to avoid an oncoming vehicle by swerving to the side or stopping to avoid a collision. Unfortunately, fatigued drivers are unaware of the impending accident and will do nothing to avoid it or reduce its severity.
Truckers driving on the opposite lane or failing to avoid a conspicuous object are obvious signs of fatigue. Examining crash details will give insight into whether there was a clear lack of accident avoidance on the trucker’s part.
Examining the Driver’s Logbook
Some trucking companies require their truckers to keep concise records of their driving hours, breaking times, and fuel consumption. The driver’s logbook can be examined to determine how long the driver was on the road before the accident. If the truckers don’t keep a logbook, other available documentation may need to be examined for any indicators of overworking leading to fatigue.
Checking Billed Hours With the Trucking Companies
Some truckers overwork because they’re trying to accumulate more payment. This isn’t only dangerous, but it’s also against the FMSCA regulations. The billed hours can be used to show how long the driver was driving. If they were driving for more than 14 hours, then they were likely fatigued during the accident.
Injured in a Truck Accident?
An experienced St. Louis truck accident lawyer can help connect all the dots and prove that the trucker’s fatigue led to the accident that injured you. If you have been injured in a truck accident, get in touch with The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. today to learn more about your legal rights and ensure they are protected.
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