New rules make it easier to hold truckers accountable for how many hours they are behind the wheel. This will cut down on the number off accidents caused by sleepy drives, officials hope.
A new proposal would require truckers to electronically record their time behind the wheel. This has been mandated by federal law late in 2015, but Tennessee has not yet officially adopted the measure. When there is an accident with a big truck, there are often fatalities. Studies have shown one reason trucks get into accidents is tired or sleepy drivers, an this rule is aimed at making that happen less often.
In 2013 rules were passed by the Tennessee Legislature that limit how much time a trucker can drive, and it required certain amounts of time to be taken off. Recording the hours electronically takes it a step further by making verification easier.
A Nashville truck accident lawyer said he welcomed the changes.
“Ultimately we want to see fewer accidents and fewer deaths on the highways,” Henry Queener of the Queener Law Office in Nashville said. “Holding truckers accountable will help keep them off the road when they are drowsy. It might also protect them from being abused by their companies, so it benefits everyone.”
According to an Associated Press story, truckers have kept paper logs in the past, but new technology will keep track of engine hours, vehicle movement, miles driven, and location, which will make it hard for anyone to work around the system. For years paper records have been kept, but it was easy to keep two sets of records, or to even just put in wrong information.
Truckers often face a double edged sword of sorts. The temptation is great at times to grab another load. They may not feel tired, think they can handle it and the money is tempting. Also sometimes employers give hard deadlines and drivers are behind the wheel longer than they should be. Either situation can make them sleepy and unsafe behind the wheel. If you are in an accident contact a truck accident lawyer in Tennessee.