FindLaw KnowledgeBasePublished: 2012-07-13
Hours-of-Service (HOS) regulations are the regulations that limit the amount of time a commercial truck driver can be on the road and the amount of time and frequency of mandatory rest periods in between travel. The idea behind HOS is to set forth mandatory minimum regulations for interstate commercial drivers in effort to curb dangerous situations where fatigue has caused accidents across the country and here in Massachusetts. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, a division of the Department of Transportation governs these HOS regulations.
The FMCSA monitors commercial truck carriers in an effort to ensure they are abiding by the federal regulations through the use of log books. Truckers and trucking companies are required to keep detailed logs of the time spent on the road, as well as the time spent not driving when the vehicle operators are supposed to be resting. These records can be kept in a physical log book or by using an electronic on-board recording device which will automatically record certain details of a vehicles movement. The type of things that must be recorded in the log include time spent working, time spent resting, miles traveled in a single day, and other items that help verify who the driver was and for whom they were working for.
The government strictly monitors compliance with HOS regulations and failure to abide by these laws could lead to penalty for the driver and the company that employs the driver. These penalties could come in the way of financial penalties or, in the case of the driver, a suspension of his commercial driving license. Despite the oversight, many times these federal regulations are not followed, which puts in danger the lives of the employee driving the commercial vehicle as well as the other passengers that share the roadway with these vehicles. The guidelines for hours-of-operation are designed for and intended to promote the safety and well-being of everyone, to disregard them is a safety risk not worth taking.
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury in an accident caused by a large commercial truck, contact an experienced personal injury attorney. A personal injury lawyer can assess your case and help you get the compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering you deserve. For more information, contact an attorney today.