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Miami Truck Accident Attorney

Commercial vehicles, such as tractor-trailers and semi-trucks, pose serious and unique dangers on the road. These vehicles can greatly outweigh passenger cars; are difficult to steer, stop, and operate; and often carry hazardous materials. Individuals hired to operate commercial vehicles must understand and appreciate these dangers and exercise the utmost care when driving commercial vehicles on our roads.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 276,000 large trucks were involved in traffic crashes in the United States during 2010, resulting in 3,675 fatalities and 80,000 injuries. Of these deaths, 76 percent were occupants of other vehicles and 10 percent were non-occupants. Of those injured, 73 percent were occupants of other vehicles.

Between 2009 and 2010, fatalities in crashes involving large trucks increased by 9% and injuries increased by 8%. The number of registered large trucks in the U.S. increased by over 37% during that same time.

“Large trucks were more likely to be involved in a fatal multiple-vehicle crash as opposed to a fatal single-vehicle crash than were passenger vehicles (82% of fatal crashes involving large trucks are multiple-vehicle crashes, compared with 58% for fatal crashes involving passenger vehicles).” – NHTSA

Commercial vehicle and trucking accidents can be caused by:

  • Driver Fatigue

  • Aggressive and Careless Driving

  • Falling Cargo

  • Poorly Maintained Equipment

  • Speeding

  • Improper Use of Mobile Devices

  • Inadequate Training

  • Improper Weight and Load Distributions

  • Poor Visibility

  • Inattentiveness

  • Following Too Closely

  • Driver Distraction

These are serious cases and deserve attention and diligence in prosecuting. An inadequate or untimely investigation can compromise any chance of achieving justice for those hurt and injured.

Accidents involving tractor-trailers, cranes, large trucks, or other commercial vehicles are very different from those involving standard automobiles. Lawyers handling truck accident claims must have specific knowledge of the federal and state laws governing the proper and safe operation of commercial vehicles. There are several statutes that govern the regulation and operation of commercial vehicles. For example, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act (FMCSA) is a comprehensive set of laws that was enacted to ensure drivers of commercial vehicles follow specific rules to keep our roads safe.

Who must comply with commercial trucking regulations?

All non-exempt commercial motor vehicles that cross state lines are subject to the federal motor carrier safety regulations. If these semi-trucks are operating within one state, they need to abide by state-equivalent motor carrier safety regulations. The intent of the regulations is to cover all persons and entities involved in operating commercial vehicles, including:

  • Drivers

  • Hiring managers

  • Trainers

  • Supervisors

  • Managers

  • Dispatchers

Additional truck/commercial vehicle regulations covered by the FMCSA

As well as identifying all types of drivers, companies, and vehicles required to comply with the FMCSA, the Act also regulates:

  • CDL requirements

  • Driver qualification and testing

  • Operating or Driving a commercial truck or large vehicle

  • Proper equipment and Parts for safe operation

  • Logging hours of driving or operation

  • Routine inspection and maintenance requirements

  • Drug testing and screening

  • Insurance requirements

  • proper record keeping

Within each of these regulations, there are specific duties and requirements imposed on drivers, owners, and operators of trucks and commercial vehicles.

Understanding the rules and regulations of the FMCSA is necessary when representing an individual injured in an accident caused by a truck or commercial vehicle. Over the years, trucking companies have developed standards and industry practices common to all trucking companies. It is important to understand not only the rules and regulations but also how the industry has changed and implemented management and operational practices to comply with the rules and regulations of the FMCSRs.

Our Florida Office Locations

Viñas & DeLuca is headquartered in Miami, Florida and has offices available for consultation in Miami, Boca Raton/Palm Beach, and Tampa. We have handled cases in multiple state and federal jurisdictions throughout Florida. Click here for more information.

Contact a Miami Truck Attorney

If you or a loved one were injured in a Florida vehicle accident, contact Viñas & DeLuca for a free and confidential consultation by calling (305) 372-3650. Or, you can complete our Free Case Evaluation Form or chat with us online. One of our attorneys will contact you right away. We are here 24/7/365 to speak with you and answer your questions. If you cannot come to us, we will come to you.

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