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Truck accidents: Understanding your defense options

Trucking accidents can happen for myriad reasons, and in many cases, the contributing factor may not be the fault of the truck driver or trucking company at all. Because of the high level of regulations and the specialized training drivers must go through, tractor-trailer drivers can be some of the safest drivers on the road, despite their reputations.

With the recent media attention given to the Tracy Morgan semi accident earlier this year, more and more people are turning their focus to how many hours truck drivers typically work and whether or not that is safe. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is very clear in its handbook on how many hours drivers can work before having to rest. There are also various guidelines surrounding how many days in a row drivers can work before taking a longer break.

Despite these regulations, the stigma persists that truck drivers, in New York and across the country, work over hours to meet deadlines and increase profits, theoretically at the increased risk of causing an accident. However, it is often regular drivers that are at fault in these types of accidents because people’s fear of the large trucks can lead them to pass unsafely or ride in the truck’s blind spots.

If you have been involved in a tractor-trailer accident and the other party is claiming you were at fault, it may be difficult to prove otherwise without an experienced defense attorney. Talking with someone about your case can help you better understand your rights and how the other party may have contributed to the accident.

Source: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, “Hours of Service of Drivers” Dec. 20, 2014

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