The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), along with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), are responsible for the regulation of 18-wheelers and those that operate tractor-trailers. As such, there are many different regulations that a trucking company needs to follow before any of their truckers or big rigs head out on the road.
Continue reading to learn more about some of the most common NHTSA rules to know, and how violating these rules could land the trucking company in hot water.
NHTSA Rules to Know
The NHTSA has a number of different regulations that apply to tractor-trailers, involving nearly every facet of the manufacture, care, and operation of a truck. With that being said, some of these regulations directly impact the safety of those sharing the roads with a big rig.
First, the NHTSA requires trucking companies to comply with certain truck driver scheduling requirements. Generally speaking, truck drivers must not work more than 70 hours per week, or 8 days in a row, and must submit to appropriate medical exams, and drug and alcohol screenings prior to being authorized to drive.
There are also specific equipment, parts, and accessories that the truck driver will need to have access to at all times, including an Electronic Logging Device (ELD). Furthermore, the FMCSA BASICS system will need to be used to assess the safety of not only the truck driver, but also the commercial truck as well.
Fault of the Trucking Company
It is more common than you might think for a trucking company to bend these rules in order to increase their profits. Unfortunately, this results in too many truck drivers who worked too many long hours having lost their lives in fatigued driving accidents.
One Los Angeles truck accident lawyer said, “No one can go up against an 18-wheeler and win. I can’t tell you how many passenger cars and other vehicles have been destroyed by tractor-trailers whose drivers fell asleep, even for just a minute, at the wheel.”
In cases like these, and other instances of the trucking company’s refusal to adhere to the regulations and laws implemented by the FMCSA and NHTSA, many injury victims will take legal action against the trucking company in order to hold them accountable for their negligence and obtain compensation for the ways their lives have been damaged by their collision with the tractor-trailer.