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    Ponchatoula Fatigued Truck Driver Accidents 

    Most people need a good amount of sleep to focus on their daily tasks, and it can be especially difficult to fight off fatigue on the road. This can make driving conditions particularly dangerous for truckers who must operate large vehicles at night or in the early hours of the morning.

    Injuries in fatigued truck driver accidents are often devastating, and you may require the help of a Ponchatoula lawyer if you are faced with this situation. A skilled legal professional could help you get the compensation you deserve by proving the truck driver’s negligence and that of their employer.

    Fatigued Truckers Behind the Wheel

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) oversees interstate trucking and dictates how many hours truckers can remain on the road per day and week.

    Trucks are equipped with black boxes to monitor their movement, like those used in airplanes. This way, if an accident occurs, investigators will know whether the trucker tried to brake before impact, and no braking attempt may be a sign that the trucker dozed off.

    Trucking companies may offer truckers incentives to deliver orders early and look the other way if their employees alter their driving logs to comply with FMCSA rules when they actually are driving excess hours. This negligence is a common cause of trucker fatigue.

    Some other common reasons truck drivers become fatigued are:

    • Driving at night, in opposition to the circadian rhythm
    • Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea
    • Drugs that induce drowsiness, either prescription or illicit
    • Drinking alcohol, a depressant
    • Driving long distances on monotonous highways with no partner to help them stay awake

    Motorists on the road near commercial trucks owe it to themselves to look for signs that truckers are fatigued to avoid a catastrophic accident.

    Signs a Trucker is Fatigued

    The warning signs of driver fatigue may not be dramatic. To avoid an accident, it is important to observe a trucker’s behavior. They may drift over the lane line and suddenly correct themselves as they come awake. Watch for truckers in their cabs whose heads are nodding forward. Drivers who often meander onto the road’s shoulder may be drowsy. A Ponchatoula attorney can study the truck’s black box, police reports, medical charts, and witness statements to determine if a negligence lawsuit is viable after a fatigued driver accident.

    Insurance Requirements Higher for Commercial Trucks

    Louisiana drivers must carry a minimum of $15,000 in liability insurance for any bodily injury they cause to another person in an auto accident. However, the trucking industry is governed by federal law. Interstate commercial carriers are required to have $750,000 in liability insurance and up to $5 million if the freight is hazardous.

    Depending on a plaintiff’s injuries and financial need after a fatigued truck driver accident, a Ponchatoula attorney may advise that an insurance settlement is the best solution.

    Civil Lawsuit is the Alternative

    If a person in a truck crash sustains severe injuries, they could potentially require a lifetime of care. If several defendants were responsible for the accident, a civil lawsuit might be appropriate. For instance, beyond the trucker’s own negligence, the trucking company could be held liable for its employee’s actions while on the job.

    The plaintiff in a truck accident case can seek compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and property damage, but also for pain and suffering, future lost earning power, loss of life’s enjoyment, and emotional trauma.

    Juries can easily calculate medical bills, but putting a price on a lifetime of pain is more complicated. An Ponchatoula lawyer can understand the jury’s dilemma and use their knowledge of the local court system to help an injured party recover damages after a fatigued driver truck crash.

    A Ponchatoula Attorney Could Offer Advice After a Fatigued Truck Driver Accident

    Because trucking companies by law must carry a substantial amount of liability insurance, you may prefer a quick settlement if your injuries are not catastrophic. However, if you wish to fight for more compensation after you were injured in a fatigued truck driver accident, a Ponchatoula lawyer can guide you through the process. Call today to schedule a consultation.