Proposed changes to the hours-of-service (HOS) rules would give truck drivers more flexibility in their workday. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has proposed revisions to the HOS rules, all of which are geared toward allowing truck drivers to better manage the challenges of driving long distances. The FMCSA administrator hopes that, if implemented, these changes help reduce the number of drowsy driving truck accidents that occur each year.
Inadequate sleep can cause drivers to be less attentive, react slower, and make poor decisions. Drowsy driving is an increasingly dangerous problem in the U.S.; the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that it causes up to 100,000 accidents per year.
Commercial truck drivers are at risk for this type of accident due to the nature of their jobs. Truck drivers are often required to drive for many hours across long stretches of highway to meet tight deadlines. Without adequate sleep, these demanding schedules take an even greater toll on drivers. Also, many truck drivers have undiagnosed sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, which can lead to daytime fatigue and falling asleep at the wheel.
Driving drowsy is in many ways similar to drunk driving. Drivers who do not obtain adequate sleep may experience impaired judgment, dulled senses, and delayed reaction times. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that adults get at least seven hours of sleep per night to prevent drowsy driving.
Currently, truck drivers hauling property are subject to several HOS rules. The FMCSA’s proposal would:
If you were injured in a drowsy driving accident, contact a Wilmington truck accident lawyer at Jacobs & Crumplar, P.A. We can help you obtain the maximum compensation to which you are entitled. Our experienced attorneys represent clients in Dover, New Castle County, and Sussex County from our offices conveniently located in Wilmington and Georgetown, Delaware. For a free consultation, please complete our online contact form or call us at 302-656-5445.