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How to Prove an Hours of Service Violation Following a Truck Accident

A sleep-deprived trucker is one of the deadliest hazards on Florida roads. Fatigue can affect response time, coordination, and decision-making—all of which are essential faculties for someone who’s behind the wheel of a big rig.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration introduced the Hours of Service (HoS) Regulations to deter commercial truckers from driving while drowsy. These rules limit the amount of time commercial drivers can spend on the road before stopping to rest. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for truckers to violate the HoS Regulations to boost their income or make up for lost time.

If you were hurt in a truck accident and the at-fault driver appeared to be drowsy or admitted to being sleep-deprived, he or she may have violated the Hours of Service Regulations. Any evidence demonstrating this violation could contribute to the strength of your personal injury claim. Such evidence might include:

  • Data from the vehicle’s black box;
  • Records from the different weigh stations on the trucker’s route;
  • The trucker’s Hours of Service logs;
  • Bills of lading that are dated and time-stamped;
  • GPS data detailing the vehicle’s speeds and locations;
  • Maintenance records that indicate the vehicle could not have traveled as far as it did without the trucker violating the Hours of Service Regulations; and
  • Receipts for tolls, food, drinks, and gas.
What Should I do if I was Hurt in a Collision With a Drowsy Trucker?

If you were hurt in a truck accident—no matter the cause—it’s important that you take immediate steps to strengthen your claim. Besides gathering evidence at the scene such as witness statements, photographs of property damage, and insurance details from the other drivers involved, you may be able to increase your claim’s chances of success by:

  • Visiting a Doctor Right Away: Undergoing a prompt medical evaluation can help your attorney tie your injuries to the crash and prove their severity.
  • Contacting an Attorney: Your lawyer can handle all correspondence with the insurance company and gather time-sensitive evidence while it’s still available.
  • Not Providing Recorded Statements: You never know how your statements to the insurance adjuster might be misrepresented. Direct all such correspondence to your lawyer.
  • Disabling Your Social Media Profiles: Insurance adjusters often review the social media accounts of claimants and their friends and family. Their goal is to find photos, videos, and text posts that can be used to challenge liability or damages. To prevent such a dispute, disable your accounts until your claim has been resolved.
Call 772-266-5555 to Speak With a Truck Accident Attorney in Florida

If you sustained serious injuries in a truck accident that someone else caused, contact Donaldson & Weston to discuss your case. We combine the tenacity and resources of a large practice with the personal touch of a small, local firm. Call 772-266-5555 to set up a free consultation with a truck accident lawyer in Florida. You can also use our Contact Form to reach us online.

What Our Clients Say
The attorneys at Donaldson & Weston helped me get an amazing result on my case. Obviously I’ve been through a lot physically but I feel better now and the money really helped my family. When I was riding my bicycle I was hit by a truck that wasn't paying attention. I am not the suing type, but I would definitely hire this firm again. - M.P.
After my accident, i felt like I was being pulled in a bunch of different directions. I really didn't know what to do and all I wanted was someone to shoot me straight. The lawyers at the firm were so honest and definitely pointed me in the right direction. The staff was professional. I think it’s great that only attorneys work on my case, it definitely made me feel comfortable - D.L.
After my accident happened I waited to hear back from the insurance company for about 6 months. I just felt like they kept jerking me around. They even told me not to hire an attorney because it would mean less money in my pocket. I couldn't wait any longer because my bills were out of hand. I hired this firm and they were solid. I got a great result without having to go to court. - S.C.