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Shutting down drivers after accidents: Is there a better way?

After a serious truck accident, most people would agree that the driver should be grounded to avoid further accidents. However, it is important to consider whether there is a more effective way to avoid these types of accidents in the first place.

There are numerous possible approaches to minimize and avoid accidents of this kind, including better background checks, training of drivers and more stringent controls over potential violations. One recent incident illustrates the importance of better trucking regulation.

A Tragic Accident

According to an article in Overdrive Online, The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a shut-down order shortly after a truck driver crossed the median in his truck and caused an accident that resulted in three people dead.

At the time of the accident, the driver responsible was in violation of a number of federal trucking regulations, including:

  • Hours-of-service maximums
  • Logbook and record keeping requirements
  • Off-duty time requirements

These are just the violations that were discovered. It is possible that the driver was guilty of a number of other infractions, as well.

Regulatory Action After the Fact

Although the FMCSA had to shut this driver down, the efforts are too little too late. None of the administration’s efforts will prevent the fatalities involved in the accident that led to the driver being shut down.

Instead of looking backward to see a driver with multiple hours-of-service violations at the time of a fatal accident, perhaps the regulations could be more preemptive, effectively shutting down drivers or flagging drivers who are at the limit of their time of service maximum.

That is just one possibility for making the trucking regulations more effective at preventing serious accidents. Hopefully the FMCSA and other organizations responsible for trucking industry safety will improve the regulations to prevent accidents of this kind. In the meantime, if you or someone you love has been injured in a truck accident, talk with an experienced lawyer who will protect your rights and help you obtain maximum compensation.