For long haul truckers, miles mean money. But a tired driver is a dangerous driver and this can result in mayhem – a bad thing for Texas drivers.
With just a few strokes of a pen, truckers trying to cover more miles on insufficient rest can falsify a paper logbook. The tragic result is all too often a crash by a fatigued truck driver that kills or maims other motorists.
Illegal Overtime and Altered Trucker Logbooks
As reported in the San Antonio Express News, trucker Tredell Dixon talked of the stories he’s heard of drivers putting in illegal overtime and altering paper logbooks to cover their tracks.
“When a truck’s not moving, a driver isn’t making money,” said Dixon, a driver for Houston-based Leedy Logistics. “I see drivers just go, go, go.”
Dixon’s stories, passed among drivers, allude to problems within an industry that typically pays by the mile: Some truckers skip or shorten mandatory rest periods structured to keep fatigue in check, creating a hazard on freight-heavy corridors like those that run through San Antonio. Because most drivers record their hours in paper logbooks, it takes only a few strokes of a pencil to conceal the extra time on the road.
To combat this problem in 2016, companies have begun installing digital recording devices ahead of a federal mandate that most long distance trucks be compliant by the end of 2017. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration estimates that the tighter control with the electronic devices could prevent over 1,800 crashes and save over 25 lives per year.
It was a sleepy trucker who slammed into the limo bus of comedian Tracy Morgan in 2014, severely injuring him and killing comedian James McNair.
Bad Records > Bad Truck Driving
Drivers of tractor-trailer rigs operate multi-ton vehicles hurtling down the highway at speeds that can wreak terrible suffering if they crash. Drivers have a responsibility to get rest and keep accurate logs. They should put safety above racking up more miles and dollars. When they don’t and when the result is a terrible crash, the law must bring them to justice and provide compensation to their victims.
If you’ve been involved in a semi-truck accident with a tired driver, it’s a serious issue. If you were injured or a family member perished as a result of that accident, you may be owed compensation from the the truck driver’s employer, the truck driver, company that owned the truck, the shipping broker, etc. An experienced semi-truck accident attorney can help guide you through the often complex layers of liability and insurance coverage to ensure full justice – full compensation – for those harmed.
There is no charge for one our attorneys to review your case.
If you or your family member has been affected by a semi-truck accident where sleep deprivation or driver fatigue may have been a factor in causing the crash, contact us today for a free case evaluation.