What Role Does Driver Fatigue Play in Truck Accidents and Liability?

interior of truck cabin

Driver fatigue is a leading cause of accidents, and it can be an especially important factor in truck accidents. Truck drivers are on the road for a long time each day and the vehicles they drive can be incredibly dangerous to the other motorists who share the road with them. If they are driving when they are tired or their employer is pushing them harder than they should, that can lead to an accident. If you were harmed in an accident and believe that driver fatigue was to blame, an experienced Memphis car accident lawyer from our firm is ready to help you.

How Does Driver Fatigue Contribute to Accidents?

Some people do not realize how dangerous it is to drive while tired. Driver fatigue can manifest in a few ways, and almost all of them are dangerous for the operator of a truck and any motorists sharing the road with them. A driver who gets sleepy behind the wheel can:

  • Suffer from slower reflexes
  • Nod off or experience “microsleeps”
  • Make worse decisions than they normally would
  • Drift out of their lane

These tired truck drivers can easily cause or contribute to an accident.

Are There Trucking Industry Rules to Prevent Driver Fatigue?

A sleepy driver is always dangerous, but they would obviously be far more dangerous when operating a larger vehicle like a truck. Trucks and their cargo weigh so much more than passenger cars, making serious injuries and even death likely in the event of an accident.

Federal regulators understand this and have set limitations on how long a truck driver can operate in an effort to reduce the odds of driver fatigue causing an accident. Drivers can only drive for a certain amount of hours in a 24-hour period and they have mandated breaks. The drivers are aware of this and so are their employers. If either or both ignore these rules, they need to be held accountable.

What Kinds of Injuries Are Common in Trucking Accidents?

The size and weight of trucks make accidents involving them particularly dangerous. It is not uncommon for victims to experience injuries like:

  • Concussions
  • Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
  • Disfigurement
  • Internal bleeding
  • Organ damage
  • Broken bones
  • Burns
  • Amputations

Injuries from a truck accident can remain with you for life, and your compensation needs to reflect that.

What Can a Lawyer Do to Help Me?

You do not need a lawyer to pursue compensation, but we recommend hiring one. A seasoned personal injury attorney from our firm will act as your advocate at every stage of this process. They can:

  • Field settlement offers and fight for fair compensation
  • Look into the safety history of a driver or trucking company
  • Answer all of your questions
  • Communicate with insurance companies, lawyers, and others on your behalf
  • Defend you from accusations of wrongdoing

Reach Out to Our Legal Team

If you were injured in a truck accident, contact Ballin, Ballin & Fishman, PC and schedule a free consultation. We can tell you more about the value of your case and which parties should be held accountable for causing you and your loved ones harm.