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Government rules address trucker fatigue

Any time that you find yourself next to a semi truck on the road in Tennessee, you are instantly reminded of just how much bigger than any other vehicle these big rigs really are. Regardless of whether you drive a coupe or a full-sized pickup truck, you know that if you were to be involved in a crash involving a semi truck, you would be at great risk of injury or even death simply because of the size and weight differential of your vehicles.

This is just one of the reasons that truckers have a big responsibility to operate their vehicles safely. This includes remaining alert and awake when being the wheel. The issue of fatigue among commercial truck drivers is a serious one and has actually been addressed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in the past few years. In an effort to curb fatigue among truckers, the FMCSA instituted what it calls the Hours of Service rule.

This rule prevents a trucker from working more than 14 hours in one day and from driving more than 11 of those 14 hours in one day. It also specifies the maximum number of hours a trucker may work in a seven- or eight-day work week. When one week is over, a break lasting at least 34 hours is required before starting the next working period.

If you would like to learn more about how the FMCSA is trying to improve safety on the roads, please feel free to visit the fatigued trucker page of our Tennessee motor vehicle accident and personal injury website.

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