Truck driver fatigue is a cause or contributing factor in many accidents. Learn why truckers drive when tired and how this affects their driving abilities.

Was Truck Driver Fatigue the Cause of Your Truck Accident?

One common cause of catastrophic truck accidents is truck driver fatigue. While it is the nature of the job to drive long hours, truck drivers—often with the encouragement of trucking companies—routinely drive more hours than they can safely drive. This can result in them fighting drowsiness or falling asleep at the wheel, with you and your family paying a huge price if this causes you to suffer devastating injuries. However, you do have legal options to hold the negligent truck driver and trucking company liable for compensating you for your injuries.

Why Truck Drivers Continue to Drive When Fatigued

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has rules on how long truckers can drive without taking a break during the workday and work week. Despite this, truck drivers are under enormous pressure to continue driving—even when they know that they are drowsy or violating federal regulations regarding how many hours that they can drive without a break. Sometimes the truck driver and trucking company will alter the truck driver’s logs to show that the rules were followed when they were not.

The pressure to continue driving is often economic. Trucking companies expect their truck drivers to deliver their loads and pick up a new shipment to deliver as quickly as possible so that the trucking company makes more money. Truckers can also have a financial incentive to work more hours. If they are an independent contractor—common in the trucking industry—they can feel the same desire as the trucking company to drive longer and earn more money.

What Are the Effects of Being Fatigued?

Being drowsy can affect any driver’s ability to safely drive in many ways. In some cases, the fatigue can be as dangerous as driving drunk or drug-impaired. Ways that a trucker’s fatigue can reduce driving abilities include:

  • Lack of concentration
  • Difficulty keeping eyes open
  • Forgetting the last few minutes of driving
  • Poor judgment
  • Reduced reaction time
  • Daydreaming
  • Nodding off or falling asleep

We Help Victims of Drowsy Driving Truck Accidents

Was truck driver fatigue the cause of your accident? Our experienced truck accident attorneys are here to help you hold the trucking company and trucker responsible for compensating you for your injuries. We offer a free initial consultation. To schedule your appointment, call our office or fill out our online form.