All jobs have stresses and demands, and as a result, almost any worker can become bogged down in a state of fatigue. Working long hours while trying to meet rigorous deadlines may be difficult for someone who has an office job, but if a worker falls asleep in a cubicle, it is unlikely that anyone else will directly suffer serious consequences.
On the other hand, if the worker in question is behind the wheel of a big rig truck, becoming drowsy and nodding off could have devastating results. The Department of Transportation takes the issue of truck driver fatigue very seriously. According to information cited on the DOT website, every year there are close to 4,000 large truck accident fatalities. The leading factor, says the DOT, is driver fatigue.
As such, the federal government has put regulations in place to help decrease the likelihood of accidents caused by truck driver fatigue. Should a truck driver fail to adhere to these requirements, he or she may be held liable if in an accident.
On their website, the DOT states that the requirements were not an arbitrary solution to a nonexistent problem, but rather a means by which to help prevent the needless tragedies caused by fatigue-related truck accidents.
While most drivers do obey the rules, there are many drivers on the road. It only takes one driver who is not properly rested to negatively impact the lives of others.
If you or a family member have been harmed in an accident that you believe was caused by a fatigued truck driver, you may want to get in touch with a personal injury attorney. The attorney could investigate the accident to help determine liability. The attorney may also be able to help you seek proper compensation.