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Wood Dale personal injury attorney truck accident

Driving a commercial truck across the country is a challenging profession. Truck drivers must contend with long days, unpredictable work schedules, and erratic sleeping patterns. Fatigue can have a considerable impact on a person’s ability to drive – especially when people are maneuvering a large commercial truck. Sleepiness causes lowered reaction times, impaired decision-making, tunnel vision, and memory problems. Drivers who are extremely sleep deprived may even fall asleep at the wheel. Federal law has instituted restrictions designed to curb the frequency of fatigued driver truck accidents. Unfortunately, truck accidents caused by sleepiness or falling asleep at the wheel are still alarmingly common.  

Hours of Service Rules Are Intended to Prevent Fatigued Driving

Adults are supposed to get at least seven hours of sleep each night. The less sleep an individual gets at night, the greater their chances of being involved in a car accident the next day. In fact, a study published by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that missing as little as one or two hours of sleep nearly doubles the chances of being involved in a collision. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has enacted certain restrictions on the number of hours that commercial truck drivers may drive consecutively without stopping for a rest break. For example, truck drivers carrying property may drive for a maximum of 11 hours after being off duty for 10 consecutive hours. However, these regulations were recently loosened in order to provide truck drivers greater flexibility while dealing with increased demand due to COVID-19.

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