Meridian Truck Driver Fatigue
Mississippi 18-Wheeler Crash Attorneys Helping Those in Need
Commercial truck drivers are always supposed to be alert and responsive while operating a big rig. All it takes is one moment of inattention for a catastrophic accident to happen. Unfortunately, more and more truck drivers are driving while fatigued, putting themselves and those around them at risk. In fact, approximately 15% of all big-rig crashes each year are due to truck driver fatigue. Fatigued or drowsy driving impacts driving capabilities similar to that of impaired driving – reaction times are slower, decision making is hindered, and attention to detail is lacking. If you have been hurt or lost a loved one in an accident with a fatigued truck driver, call our Meridian truck accident lawyers. For over 30 years, our attorneys have fought for the rights of injured victims and have recovered over $1.5 billion in compensation for our clients. We represent people in Meridian and all throughout Mississippi. Call us today for a free case evaluation.
How Drowsy Driving Leads to More Truck Crashes
Operating an 18-wheeler or big rig truck is not easy under the best of circumstances. These vehicles can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, and complex technology must be utilized when operating them. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which regulates interstate truck drivers and trucking companies, defines fatigue as “the result of physical or mental exertion that impairs performance.” Fatigue, which can be caused by lack of sleep, stress, or long work hours, has been linked to many of the same side effects as drugs and alcohol, including:
- Slower reaction times
- Poor judgment
- Impaired decision making
Obtaining Compensation After an Accident Caused by Truck Driver Fatigue
The FMCSA specifically targets fatigued driving and sets forth guidelines all drivers must follow while on the road, known as hours of service regulations. For example, certain property-carrying drivers are only allowed to drive up to 11 consecutive hours at a time, whereas passenger-carrying drivers are allowed to drive up to 10 consecutive hours. For each type of driver, there are also required rest times that must be documented and followed. Additionally, not only is drive time regulated, but all time on the clock is as well. Under the FMCSA, if the trucker has been on the clock for 14 hours, whether driving or performing other duties, the driver should not drive beyond the 14th hour. Truck drivers are required by law to properly log their times.
Failure to follow these rules could make the trucker and the trucking company liable for the injuries you sustained in a collision. In order to recover for your injuries and establish liability in a Meridian truck accident case, you will need to prove that trucker acted negligently by driving while fatigued or drowsy. Negligence per se is used to show that someone has been negligent as a matter of law and is often used to establish liability in trucking cases involving those who drive in excess of the hours of service rules. In short, negligence per se arises when someone violates a rule or regulation that was created to protect you, and you suffered injuries as a result of the violation.
Once liability has been established, you may be eligible to receive both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are your tangible losses such as medical bills and lost wages. Non-economic damages are your intangible losses such as your pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium. Moreover, if it is found that the trucking company blatantly allowed its drivers to drive over the allotted hours or encouraged drivers to disregard the rules, they may be subject to punitive damages. Punitive damages are designed to punish a defendant for egregious, intentional, and reckless conduct.
Protect Your Rights by Consulting a Meridian Attorney
Accidents involving large trucks often result in severe and life altering injuries. Many of these injuries leave families without needed income and thousands of dollars in medical bills. In order to ensure all of your legal rights are presented to you and remain intact, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz today. With multiple Mississippi offices, we are equipped to help people injured in accidents caused by truck driver fatigue throughout Lauderdale County and surrounding areas like Meridian, Quitman, De Kalb, Decatur, Macon, and Philadelphia. Contact our office toll-free by calling 800-529-4004 or by completing our online form to set up a free consultation with a tractor-trailer wreck lawyer. Let us show you why NST is the way to go.
Most car accidents are preventable and occur as a result of errors by one or more drivers. To prove liability, you will need to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the driver owed you a duty of care, which was breached, and that your injuries resulted from the driver’s carelessness. Damages that may be available in these cases often include medical expenses, lost income, mental anguish, loss of consortium, and pain and suffering.
Truck drivers are required to follow numerous detailed regulations, including rules related to hours of service, keeping a logbook, and maintenance procedures. Many of these regulations are intended to protect other people on the road from harm. In some states, if a driver violated a law that was enacted to protect the public, the violation can create a rebuttable presumption of negligence. Trucking companies are also required to follow a number of regulations, including rules related to background checks of drivers and proper supervision. They often may be held directly or indirectly liable for a truck accident.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) evaluates applications for disability benefits. Although many people pay into this system throughout their lives, many legitimate claims are initially denied, and this process may be less straightforward than claimants expect. The SSA uses a five-step sequential evaluation to determine whether to grant benefits to an applicant. Each step is considered in a set order. We can present your case in a persuasive manner and help you appeal a denial of a meritorious claim if needed. This could include representing you in a hearing before an administrative law judge.
Workers’ compensation functions slightly differently in each state. In Tennessee, for example, businesses that employ five or more employees must carry workers’ compensation insurance. If you are injured on the job, you may recover benefits, such as medical costs and disability. Neither your employer’s nor your own culpability for your injuries will prevent you from collecting these benefits. However, it may still be a struggle to obtain benefits from your employer’s insurer. We can help you navigate this challenging process.
If you were harmed by a health care professional’s failure to use the appropriate level of care in providing treatment to you, you may be able to recover compensation. Most medical malpractice lawsuits require retaining an expert to determine the accepted standard of care and explain what the defendant did that fell short of this standard, as well as how the inappropriate conduct caused the patient’s injuries.
When you buy a toy, car, medication, or other product, you do not expect to be hurt. If you are injured, you may have grounds to file a product liability lawsuit. There are three types of defects that may be actionable: manufacturing, design, and marketing (also known as failure to warn). Manufacturers may be held accountable under multiple different theories, including strict liability, negligence, breach of warranty, and concealment. For example, if you take a drug that causes you to develop cancer, but you were not told that a potential side effect of the drug was developing cancer, you may have grounds to hold the manufacturer strictly liable for its failure to warn you of the risk.
Nursing home residents are often elderly or disabled, and thus they are especially vulnerable to neglect, physical abuse, and exploitation by staff members. Unfortunately, many nursing homes are understaffed or employ staff members who are inadequately trained to deal with potentially frustrating situations. Nursing homes are required to protect their residents from physical, mental, and emotional harm by providing a safe environment, as well as adequately training and supervising staff. A failure to do so may be grounds for a nursing home negligence lawsuit for damages.
Property owners have a duty to keep their property reasonably safe. In most situations, this includes an obligation to inspect the property for dangerous conditions and fix them or provide warnings about them so that visitors are not harmed. One type of dangerous condition, which may present a particular problem in apartment complexes or shopping centers, consists of inadequate security measures such as broken locks, poor lighting, or a lack of security guards. A failure to take security measures when appropriate may allow third-party criminals to assault, rob, rape, or otherwise harm visitors and tenants. You may be able to recover damages if you can prove that the defendant knew or should have known about a history of attacks similar to yours and taken appropriate security measures to reduce the risk of further incidents.
Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer in Memphis or the Surrounding Regions
If you are dealing with a devastating injury or medical condition, the Memphis personal injury attorneys at Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz can evaluate and explain your options. Our firm has 30 attorneys and more than 100 staff members, and we serve injured people in many areas of Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kentucky, including Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Jonesboro, Little Rock, Jackson, Meridian, Tupelo, Columbus, Grenada, Starkville, Oxford, Hayti, and Caruthersville. Contact our office toll-free by calling 800-529-4004 or by completing our online form to set up a free consultation with a personal injury, workers’ compensation, or Social Security Disability lawyer. Once you have learned more about our vigorous advocacy for the rights of the injured, you will realize that NST is the way to go.