Federal Trucking Regulations

Federal Trucking Regulations

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When a truck or large commercial vehicle collides with a passenger vehicle, passengers may suffer catastrophic injuries, and in the worst cases, death. For this reason, it is crucial that commercial vehicle companies and companies that use these large automobiles abide by all regulations laid out by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). These restrictions and federal laws are designed to keep drivers safe at all times.

Regulations are in place for public safety, and are designed to prevent some of the most common causes of accidents, including:

  • Tired drivers
  • Overloaded trucks
  • Improperly loaded vehicles
  • Poorly maintained vehicles
  • Drunk or drugged drivers

If a commercial vehicle company or a driver fails to abide by any of the restrictions and causes harm to another driver or individual, that company or driver may be held accountable for their negligent, reckless, or careless acts.

If you were injured in an accident involving a truck or commercial vehicle, call our Philadelphia truck accident lawyers right away. Our team can examine every angle of your case and hold the driver or company liable for your injuries and medical expenses. For aggressive legal representation, contact Shrager, Spivey & Sachs now!

Hours of Service Regulations

Hours of Service Regulations apply to any commercial vehicle (CMV) that is used for business or that is involved in interstate commerce and can be described by any of the following descriptions:

  • Has a weight of 10,001 lbs. or more
  • The vehicle has a gross combination weight rating of 10,001 lbs. or more
  • The vehicle is designed to carry 16 passengers not for compensation
  • The vehicle is designed to carry nine or more passengers for compensation
  • The vehicle is designed to transport hazardous materials in a quantity that requires placards

Vehicles that fall into any of the above categories must abide by specific hours of service regulations, which are listed below:

  • Truck drivers may not drive in excess of 11 hours a day.
  • Drivers must take a mandatory 10 hours (consecutive hours) off duty before driving again.
  • Drivers may not drive beyond the 14th hour on duty even If they did not drive the full 11 hours.
  • Drivers may drive if 8 or less than 8 hours have passed since the driver’s last off-duty period or sleeper berth period of 30 minutes.
  • Drivers are not permitted to drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7 out of 8 consecutive days. (A driver may restart a 7/8 consecutive day period if they take 34 or more consecutive hours to fulfill an off-duty period.)
  • Drivers are required to spend at least 8 hours in the sleeper berth and an additional 2 consecutive hours off duty, in the sleeper berth, or any combination of the two.

These hours of operation regulations are designed to keep roads and drivers safe. Limiting the amount of time a trucker can spend behind the wheel can prevent truck drivers and commercial vehicle drivers from falling asleep at the wheel, losing focus, or becoming easily distracted. Drivers who fail to abide by the hours of operation can face serious criminal charges.

In addition, it is important to note that hours of service regulations are different for commercial vehicles carrying passengers. To learn more about hours of service regulations, refer to this page.

Commercial Vehicle Weight Restrictions

According to the United States Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration, there is a national weight standard system that applies to all commercial trucks traveling on the Interstate Highway System. This highway system spans nearly 40,000 miles throughout the U.S. Although states may create their own weight standards for trucks and other commercial vehicles while the vehicles are not operating on the Interstate Highway System, all trucks and CMVs operating on the Interstate Highway System must abide by the following:

  • If the truck or CMV is a single-axle vehicle, the weight of the vehicle may not exceed 20,000 lbs.
  • If the truck of CMV is a tandem-axle vehicle, the weight of the vehicle may not exceed 34,000 lbs.
  • The total gross vehicle weight may not exceed 80,000 lbs.

To learn more about commercial vehicle weight restrictions, refer to this page.

We Have Recovered Millions in Compensation for Injured Victims

If you or someone you love has sustained serious injuries in a truck or commercial vehicle collision, it is important you seek experienced legal advocacy right away. At Shrager, Spivey & Sachs, our Philadelphia truck accident lawyers are passionate about safeguarding the rights and futures of Philadelphia residents. When you entrust our firm with your case, we will be sure to explore every avenue of your case to determine who should be held responsible for any injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional distresses you may face as a result of your accident. When we take your case, we will fight to pursue maximum monetary compensation for you!

When your health and well-being are on the line, trust our Philadelphia truck accident lawyers. We are backed by more than 80 years of experience and have handled thousands of cases similar to yours!