How Tired Truck Drivers Cause Accidents

Driving without sufficient sleep can be as dangerous as drunk driving and distracted driving. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, roughly 13 percent of truck drivers are fatigued at the time of their truck accident. Tired truck drivers are a danger to everyone on the road. 

If you were in a truck crash, you deserve money for your medical bills, lost wages, and other losses. The Tampa truck accident attorneys of Catania and Catania Injury Lawyers understand the harm truck driver fatigue can cause for innocent drivers. Our legal team will use its three decades of experience to help you recover all the money you need to move forward after your accident.

Contact our law firm or give us a call at (813) 222-8545 to schedule a free consultation with one of our drowsy driving accident lawyers in Tampa, FL. Learn more about how tired truck drivers cause accidents below.

How Can Our Tampa Truck Accident Lawyers Help You With a Truck Crash Claim?

How Common Are Fatigued Truck Accidents in Florida?

Truck accidents are complicated personal injury claims. Insurance companies and trucking companies use their considerable resources and armies of lawyers to fight accident claims. You need a team of lawyers working to protect your best interests.

Our Tampa truck accident attorneys at Catania and Catania Injury Lawyers have recovered over $500 million for our clients since 1992. We have advocated for the rights of accident victims for over 30 years. We can match the trucking company’s resources at every turn.

When you hire our legal team, you can expect us to:

  • Thoroughly investigate the cause of the truck accident
  • Identify the factors that led to the accident and the parties responsible for the truck crash
  • Filing insurance claims and monitor the status of those claims
  • Work with expert witnesses to gather evidence of fault, causation, and damages
  • Negotiate fair settlements for your injury claims
  • Prepare and file a lawsuit against the trucking company and other parties if they refuse to agree to fair compensation 

If you were injured in a truck accident, you deserve compensation for your damages. Let us help you get the compensation you deserve. 

Call today to schedule a free consultation with one of our Tampa truck accident lawyers. Your consultation is free, and you do not owe attorneys’ fees unless we win your case. 

How Common Are Fatigued Truck Accidents in Florida?

The NHTSA reported roughly 538,000 large truck accidents in 2019, including more than 5,000 fatal crashes and 119,000 injury crashes. Drowsy driving is an underreported cause of truck accidents. Therefore, the actual number of tired truck drivers who cause crashes is unknown. 

However, the NHTSA estimated that 91,000 traffic accidents involved a drowsy driver in 2016. Those accidents resulted in almost 800 deaths and 50,000 injuries. The FLHSMV reported that drowsy and ill (sick) driving contributed to over 13,400 traffic crashes in 2019.

How Do Tired Truck Drivers Cause Accidents in Tampa?

When a truck driver falls asleep at the wheel, they unleash an 80,000-pound on the road. A truck driver may nod off and fail to stop for traffic. 

Fatigued truck drivers may swerve into another lane, causing a jackknife truck accident when the driver tries to overcorrect. In addition, fatigue and drowsiness result in judgment errors, such as making wrong turns or pulling into traffic without adequate clearance. 

Being tired also results in slower reflexes. A truck driver may be unable to react in time to avoid a crash. 

Fortunately, truck drivers and trucking companies can be held financially liable for truck accidents caused by fatigue or drowsiness. Our Tampa truck accident lawyers can help you pursue claims against these parties to recover compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages

What Causes Truck Driver Fatigue?

Lengthy driving hours, mental exertion, strenuous activities, and sleep deprivation can contribute to truck driver fatigue. Working too many hours without sufficient rest and sleep is one of the most common causes of drowsy truck driving accidents. 

Federal regulations limit the number of hours a truck driver may drive to prevent fatigued driving. Hours of service regulations limit truck drivers to a maximum of 11 hours after ten consecutive hours off duty. Commercial truck drivers cannot drive after the 14th consecutive hours after coming on duty. 

Additionally, drivers are required to take regular driving breaks and rest breaks. They cannot drive more than 60 hours in seven days or more than 70 hours in eight days. Exceeding safe driving hours can slow a truck driver’s reaction time. 

There Are Problems with the Federal Regulations for Hours of Service

Even though the federal government limits the hours a truck driver may operate a truck without breaks or rest, it does not prevent fatigued truck driving. A truck driver can become fatigued long before their 11-hour shift ends. Furthermore, drowsy driving can be caused by sleep apnea, medications, and other health conditions.

Another problem with the federal regulations is enforcement. You cannot force a driver to sleep for the 10 hours they are off duty. Additionally, the rules do not state that the shifts must be regular. Therefore, truck drivers often have irregular sleep patterns, contributing to truck driver fatigue.

Trucking companies also pressure their drivers to exceed safe driving limits. The companies set unrealistic delivery schedules to increase profits. The result is tried truck drivers who may also exceed safe speed limits to meet delivery deadlines. 

Truckers who do not drive to other states are not bound by the federal guidelines. Therefore, they are only required to follow state laws. Florida hours of service laws and commercial truck rules are not as strict as the federal hours of service. 

Common Truck Accidents From Fatigued Drivers

Accidents from fatigued commercial truck drivers are more common than you think. These include:

Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Tampa Truck Accident Lawyers

Do you have questions about how tired truck drivers cause accidents? Contact our law office to discuss your case with a Tampa truck accident lawyer. During your free case evaluation, an attorney will answer your questions and explain your legal options for recovering money for truck accident injuries.