The largest danger of truckers driving while they are overtired is that their reaction time may drastically decrease or completely disappear if they fall asleep. This is means if a trucker has to make a quick maneuver, they may not be able to and cause an accident as a result. These situations can be just as bad as drunk driving, depending on the level of the driver’s fatigue. If you were in an accident caused by truck driver fatigue in Colorado Springs, our team of dedicated attorneys could help you through the claims process and hold the negligent party responsible.
Various rules and regulations at the state and federal levels are designed to avoid driver fatigue. Some of these regulations include limitations on hours driven, restrictions on certain medications and substances that may make them drowsy, and work shift regulations. Then, each company has its own rules and regulations in place.
An experienced attorney in Colorado Springs could review the federal, state, and internal company guidelines that would apply to a particular truck driver fatigue case to determine if there was a violation of any of these rules. A violation of any of these regulations is evidence of negligence or recklessness.
In Colorado Springs, the leading cause of trucker fatigue accidents is lack of sleep or rest. Truckers may not get enough sleep because they are trying to make deadlines or arrival times with deliveries. Truckers may be trying to hurry through something and skipping important rest or sleep periods, which may result in high levels of fatigue and more mistakes. Additionally, a trucking company may pressure or demand their employees to work to meet deadlines even if they have surpassed the maximum number of hours they are allowed to drive.
A company’s expectations for its drivers may be unreasonable under certain circumstances, which may lead to more accidents. If an attorney can prove that a trucking company knew or should have known that these practices would lead to their truckers driving while they are overtired, the company could be liable. This is because it is a crime to choose to drive while too tired or knowingly put someone in this dangerous position.
There are different levels of responsibility in any given case, including truck accident cases. Therefore, if a fatigued driver is liable, then their employer may be partially responsible as well through vicarious liability. This means that even though the trucking company did not do anything wrong, but because it employs the driver, it is liable for their mistakes while they were working. If the trucking company put additional rules or regulations in place or gave directions to the driver that put others at risk, the court may award damages against this party instead of the truck driver.
Cases for accidents caused by truck driver fatigue in Colorado Springs can be complicated to pursue because there are many layers of responsibility and insurance as well as various applicable state and federal regulations. Therefore, an injured party should retain a lawyer who has experience with these crashes and could help them navigate all different complexities. For help with your case, call our firm today.