Out-of-State Driver Involved in a Truck Accident in Phoenix
Large commercial trucks are vehicles on our roadways with the capability of causing accidents of catastrophic levels due to their size and weight. These vehicles are commonly referred to as “semi-trailers” or “tractor-trailers” and are a crucial aspect of our economy, as they transport the products and goods that we all use. The danger associated with these trucks is that while the weight of a passenger vehicle averages approximately 4,000 pounds, these trucks can often weigh up to 80,000 pounds, and have considerable less maneuverability and braking speed. Studies indicate that when there is fatal accident involving both a passenger car and a truck, that 9 out of 10 times the occupant in the passenger car is the person killed.
The national governing body for large trucks and buses is the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). All organizations that have commercial trucks or buses which transport people or cargo for interstate commerce are required to have a USDOT Number. The USDOT number serves as a unique identifier and also requires that the company adhere to a set of safety requirements and regulations that FMCSA outlines nationally and is also enforced locally by agencies also. In Arizona, the Department of Public Safety’s Highway Patrol has a division dedicated to enforcing these regulations known as Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Bureau. The advantage to this structure is that there is uniformity to the regulations across state lines.
Some of the requirements that operators of the large commercial trucks must adhere to for FMCSA are as follows:
- Minimum insurance levels/coverage: Depending on a variety of variables, the minimum ranges from $750,000 to $5,000,000.
- Requiring the drivers of these vehicles to have a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) with required training and testing.
- Holds companies responsible for drug and alcohol testing of drivers to be required for employment.
- The vehicles must be equipped with specific equipment and adhere to protocols on maintenance and service.
Common reasons why the commercial vehicle is at-fault in accidents:
- Driver fatigue: There are clear laws limiting the amount of hours a driver can operate per day; unfortunately, the drivers and their companies are frequently under pressure to deliver cargo within time constraints.
- Equipment failure: Perhaps the vehicle was operating without adhering to the proper inspection, maintenance, or service requirements.
- Weight violations: There are clearly defined maximum volumes of cargo in place to insure the vehicles can safely maneuver and operate.
- Drug or alcohol use.
Accidents involving out-of-state commercial vehicles can result in serious injuries and even death. The insurance companies responsible for compensating victims in accidents with their vehicles are experienced in dealing with such cases. This is why you should contact The Husband & Wife Law Team at Breyer Law Offices, P.C. at (602) 267-1280.They have the experience in negotiating with the insurance companies and will fight to protect your rights and see that you receive the maximum compensation you deserve.
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Confidentially reviewed by Attorney Mark Breyer