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Tampa Personal Injury Blogs from August, 2011

Tampa Truck Accident Information

According to the Florida Department of Transportation, Florida ranks high among states involving large or commercial truck accidents. Semi-truck accidents account for nearly 400,000 accidents each year among our nation's roadways which result in nearly 4000 deaths. In Florida alone, there are nearly 350 accidents that result in death involving tractor-trailer trucks. Our Tampa trucking attorneys have litigated cases involving semi-trucks and are familiar with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, as well as Florida laws that govern large trucks within our state. We are dedicated to representing individuals who have been involved in a Florida trucking accident.
Trucking accidents are very different in many ways from an automobile accident and often times involve much more serious injuries, including wrongful death. Some of the most common causes of semi-truck related accidents include driver fatigue, the use of drugs and/or alcohol by the driver, overloaded or improperly loaded trucks, unsafe passing techniques, bad weather and poor vehicle maintenance. As trucking accident attorneys, we know the importance of requesting significant information from the motor carrier and driver at the very onset of your case such as driver logs to determine if the truck driver and/or motor carrier satisfied the hours of service requirements.
Section 316.302, Florida Statutes, adopts the federal rules and regulations contained in 49 C.F.R. parts 382, 385 and 390-397 for all commercial vehicles that engage in interstate commerce. For those semi-truck drivers that only drive intrastate, they are governed by various sub-sections of 316.302, Florida Statutes. One of the biggest distinctions between interstate and intrastate operations is the driver's hours of service. For those interstate truck drivers, they must follow the "11/14 rule", which means the driver is limited to 11 total drive hours and 14 total duty hours in one 24 hour period. Plus, they must not drive more than 70 hours in 7 days or 80 hours in 8 days with a 34 hour restart time.
For truck drivers only operating intrastate commercial vehicles and that do not transport any hazardous materials, they must not drive more than 12 hours following 10 consecutive hours off duty or for any period after the 16th hour after coming on duty following 10 consecutive hours off duty. You should be aware that other exceptions to these general rules could apply, such as transporters of agricultural products during harvest season. Should you have any questions regarding Florida trucking accidents and/or Florida trucking regulations, please contact us, your Tampa Trucking Accident Injury Attorney.
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