Travel season is quickly approaching. Many of us will hit the road for spring break trips, vacations and weekend getaways. Even if it's just your morning commute to work, you will usually share the road with several large, commercial vehicles.
In West Virginia, we rarely drive anywhere without seeing large commercial trucks or semis. Sharing the road with these large vehicles has become a given in our society. Being a victim in an accident with an 18-wheeler often results in untimely death, catastrophic injuries and loss.
The trucking industry is regulated by both federal and state laws. Drivers of large commercial vehicles must be specially licensed and trained to safely operate their vehicle in all traffic patterns, from deserted highways to rush hour bumper to bumper traffic. These drivers are primarily regulated by the US Department of Transportation and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration on the federal level and the West Virginia Department of Transportation on the state level. These agencies have developed strict guidelines for drivers including training requirements, driving hour limitations, rest requirements, maximum weight allowance and truck maintenance. ** Similar regulations apply to taxi drivers, limousine services, and other types of transportation companies.
If you are involved in an accident involving a large commercial vehicle, understanding regulations will help you understand who is at fault. Often this liability goes well beyond typical reckless driving. If the driver failed to follow regulations, it could have been a contributing factor to the accident.
Don’t navigate these situations alone. If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident with a commercial vehicle, contact Tammy Bowles Raines Law Office for a free consultation.