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Accidents that involve large commercial trucks usually result in severe injuries for the parties involved, particularly for the passengers and drivers in smaller vehicles on the road. In most cases, liability might fall on the driver of the truck or the trucking company itself. There are several kinds of evidence that you can use to figure out liability, including the log book of the truck driver.

This log book has a detailed account of the truck driver’s activities prior to the incident and, in most cases, features evidence of violations and incomplete information. Violations can reveal that the trucker’s inactions or actions might have contributed to the incident, which can, in turn, help one prove liability. Click here to learn more about truck accidents and how a lawyer can help you.

How Can a Log Book Help Your Accident Case?

The information from a trucker’s log book can help one prove whether the driver of the truck in question didn’t abide by the service regulations of federal hours. These rules tell drivers how many hours they’re allowed to drive without a break and the duty they have to regularly inspect their vehicles. Log books can sometimes contain information that reveals a violation, like:

Violating HOS (Hours of Service) Rules: Truck drivers have a certain limit on the total number of hours of service they can legally put in before taking a break. If the driver’s log book can’t reveal that the driver took the requisite breaks in between trips, then it can mean they were too tired to drive safely and, in turn, could’ve been the ones responsible for the accident.

Miles Covered: An HOS rule violation can also be found in the trucker’s total miles covered in a 24-hour span. The total number of miles traveled can be found in the log book, and this can be used to reveal that the trucker did not actually take the requisite breaks as required by law, even though they say they did.

Inspection Reports: Truckers have a duty to inspect their vehicles daily. They must jot down in their log books when they completed the inspections and whether there were any repairs or malfunctions that needed to be attended to. This kind of information found in the log book can help one prove that the truck was on the road when it was not safe to do so.

Off-Time Duty: The number of hours the truck driver said he was off duty and claimed to be in their trucker’s log book can help establish a violation of HOS rules as well.

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How Are Service Hours Documented?

The FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) is the government body responsible for keeping track of how long truckers are allowed to drive every day. At the very least, they’re responsible for coming up with these rules and regulations for truck drivers who ply their trade across state lines.

These service hour regulations are put in place so as to help ensure truckers don’t operate their vehicles while fatigued. The reality is that some of the trucks can be as heavy as 85,000 pounds when fully loaded. They’re much bigger than the more traditional passenger cars. If a truck driver sleeps behind the wheel or is just even fatigued, the impact of that could prove incredibly severe.

Truck drivers are currently allowed to drive during a fourteen-hour window on a day-to-day basis. However, this time frame can’t start until the trucker has been off for ten or more hours.

Keep in mind that every truck driver maintains the log book regularly. So if you sustained any injuries in the truck accident, then you need to consult an experienced attorney. An experienced attorney will go through the log book of the at-fault truck driver. With the information in the log book, they will help you recover reasonable compensation.


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