Proving fault in any Austin auto accident lawsuit means showing that the other driver’s carelessness caused the accident.
In legal terms, a driver’s carelessness is known as negligence. Courts look at a variety of factors to decide whether someone was being careful enough, or acting negligently.
In a negligence lawsuit, judges and juries decide how careful someone should have been. This is known as the standard of care.
For example, if you were driving in heavy rain, a jury might decide you should have driven slower than the speed limit.
Sometimes, Courts rule that when a person violates a safety law, that person’s behavior is assumed to be negligent. For example, if you are driving faster than the speed limit, a jury may assume you were driving at an unsafe speed.
18-wheelers are heavily regulated motor vehicles. Truck drivers are also required to follow a lot of safety rules to receive and maintain their truck driving licenses.
Therefore, proving an 18-wheeler driver caused an auto collision often includes showing that the trucker violated a safety requirement for truckers.
Driving is dangerous enough without the risk of overtired truckers on the road. Truck drivers’ hours on the road and how they must log those hours fall under federal law.
Sometimes pressure from their employers to put profit ahead of safety makes some truckers break the hours of service (HOS) rules.
A trucker that has been off duty for 10 or more hours in a row, is entitled to one 14-hour driving window.
After 8 hours of driving, the driver must have an off-duty or sleeping period of at least 30 minutes.
Drivers cannot drive after being on duty for 60 hours for the past 7 days (or 70 hours in the past 8 days).
Note that, as of December 16, 2014, the rule that there must be a 34-hour off-duty period in order for drivers to restart their 60- or 70-hour clock calculations has been suspended.
Truck drivers must keep a daily log of their hours on duty. This is called a record of duty status.
According to the FMCSA, there is an optional exception to the rules of maintaining a daily log for drivers who:
Drivers who meet these requirements can agree with their employers not to maintain a log. They can also choose to maintain a log, which permits them to work more than the 12-hours per day.