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Responsibilities of big-rig drivers

Driving on Maryland highways can be stressful when big rigs are crowding the roads on their weekly runs. Although they are a necessary component of the U.S. economy, eighteen-wheelers can be an intimidating presence shadowing drivers who share the road in smaller vehicles. The sheer size of commercial trucks lays a significant weight of responsibility on their drivers, and at The Law Offices of Scott N. Bergman, LLC, our attorneys have helped many a small-vehicle owner hold semitruck drivers responsible for their actions on state roads.

FindLaw outlines truckers' responsibilities clearly by pointing out long-haul drivers should not carry more than the maximum weight the law allows. If you have been in an accident with a commercial vehicle, one question to ask is whether the driver's load was within the permitted limit. FindLaw notes trucks with a single axle can haul 20,000 pounds, and those with two axles can haul "up to 34,000 pounds." Commercial drivers who exceed this limit are asking for trouble.

If a semitruck has caused an accident, another important question FindLaw suggests you ask is whether the driver had taken all of his or her breaks prior to the crash. Being well rested significantly contributes to greater safety on the road, so finding out if a driver was overtired may shed light on the incident. 

Other avenues you may want to investigate include whether:

  • The driver's commercial license was up-to-date, expired or nonexistent.
  • His or her previous driving record showed charges of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • The company and driver had maintained the vehicle properly at all times.

If you can prove the company hired a negligent driver or broke the law in some way, FindLaw suggests you may have a stronger case. For more information on truck accidents, visit our webpage.

 

 

 

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