There are new hours of service (HOS) rules for truckers across the county!
Recently announced by Ray LaHood, the USDOT Secretary, the new rule was made to help keep truck drivers awake and alert on our roadways. These rules were aimed at preventing drowsy driving-related trucking accidents in North Carolina and elsewhere. Now, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will be keeping an eye on just how long drivers are working behind the wheel to help ensure everyone’s safety on our roadways.
“Trucking is a difficult job, and a big rig can be deadly when a driver is tired and overworked,” said LaHood.
Our Grensboro trucking accident attorneys understand that traffic accidents involving tractor-trailers, semis, 18-wheelers and other large commercial vehicles oftentimes produced deadly results. These huge vehicles carry so much weight and so much power that it’s important we keep their drivers alert and well-trained behind the wheel to help to avoid accidents. Much of that preparation involves making sure they’re not overworked and they’re not falling asleep behind the wheel. This new HOS ruling is going to help.
The rule-making process took a while to complete. The FMCSA held a number of sessions nationwide in search of input from transportation officials, trucking companies, safety advocates and others.
Anne S. Ferro, the Administrator of the FMCSA, says that she feels this is the most extensive and beneficial effort that has been put forth in a rule. She says that she and the Administration looked for input from all kinds of sources to help make sure that they got it right the first time. Not only was everyone’s opinions and insight welcomed into the making of this rule, but officials with the Administration took into consideration a plethora of information through recent studies and scientific research projects. When safety is the goal, there’s no rushing and there’s no room for missing information. Everything has to be considered and everything has to be thought out.
The goal of the rule is to help provide the industry with a structure that helps to get the job done. And to make sure that truckers are focused and alert as well as well-rested while operating these huge trucks.
Under the new rule, truck drivers are still allowed to be behind the wheel of a truck for 11 hours a day. However, they will also no longer be allowed to be behind the wheel for 84 hours in a week as the maximum limit of hours worked in a seven-day period has been reduced to 70. Lastly, truckers are to take one 30-minute break at least once every 8 hours. These breaks can also be taken as often as a driver feels necessary.
Both companies and drivers can be fined if they’re busted disobeying these rules. The fines for being busted can cost thousands and thousands of dollars per offense.
Lee Law Offices, P.A. represents those who have been injured in car and trucking accidents in North Carolina and in South Carolina. If you or someone you love has been involved in an accident involving a drowsy driver and needs experienced advice about your rights, call 1-800-887-1965 to schedule a free consultation today.
More Blog Entries:
North Carolina Drowsy Drivers Increase Fatality Risks in Trucking Accidents, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, March 2, 2012
Serious Car Accidents in Charlotte and Nearby Areas Close Roadways, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, February 9, 2012