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Truck Drivers and Bus Drivers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration drafts, implements and enforces regulations to prevent injuries and accidents involving commercial motor vehicles, including trucks carrying cargo as well as buses and other vehicles carrying passengers. These regulations limit how many hours a driver can drive in a particular period and require that vehicles be properly inspected and maintained. Driver and company log books should be kept to show compliance with federal regulations. In the event of an accident, log books and company records should be checked to see if the law was being followed, although sometimes required records are missing or are doctored or fabricated after the fact to protect the trucking company or bus company.

If you are injured in a collision with a truck, bus or other commercial vehicle, contact New York City attorney Leandros A. Vrionedes, P.C. for assistance dealing with the driver, their employer and insurance company in a personal injury or wrongful death claim.

Who is covered under FMCSA Regulations?

Generally speaking, all persons required to hold a commercial drivers license (CDL) and who operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in interstate travel are covered by FMCSA regulations. Some rules apply to intrastate travel as well. Trucks of a certain gross vehicle weight or transporting hazardous materials and buses or vans transporting 16 or more passengers including the driver are considered CMVs.

What are the hours of service for truckers and bus drivers?

Truckers may not drive more than 11 hours at one stretch. Drivers may not drive after 14 hours since coming on duty, and must have ten hours off duty before they are allowed to drive the maximum hours again. Bus drivers are limited to a maximum of ten hours in service following eight hours off duty, and they may not drive after having been on duty for 15 hours. Truckers and bus drivers alike may not drive more than 60 hours in a seven-day period, or more than 70 hours in an eight-day period.

What types of regulations cover the vehicle itself?

FMCSA regulations require safety equipment to be on board and in operable condition. The Regulations also require regular records to be kept regarding inspection, repair and maintenance of the vehicle.

Are drivers required to undergo alcohol testing?

All drivers required to hold a CDL are subject to alcohol testing in the following circumstances: after most accidents, on reasonable suspicion, on a random basis, before returning to duty in a safety-sensitive position after violating prohibited alcohol conduct standards. Such drivers are also subject to unannounced follow-up testing for at least 12 months.