Truck Safety Violations Cause Accidents
Houston area trucking companies and drivers that routinely ignore rules and regulations meant to keep us safe do it for one reason – to cut costs. This invariably causes truck accidents. Multiple citations and complaints about safety issues indicate that a trucking or bus company is not safe to use. That is just common sense. In fact, the US government has a website where you can report and check on safety violations for any major trucking and transportation company. When trucking companies or their drivers ignore federal safety regulations in an attempt to cut costs, it can result in a disastrous trucking accident causing serious injuries or death. The law requires that records be kept of maintenance, weight and hours of service. Often, these items are used in the investigation of a truck accident to determine the cause. They can also point to possible safety violations as the cause. The failure of companies or drivers to comply with these requirements is not only illegal, it is dangerous.
When our firm takes on a new case for the victim of a truck or car accident whether in Houston or anywhere in Texas, one of the first things we do is seek out the safety violation history for the trucking company and the driver. It is always a good indication as to what caused the truck accident. Furthermore, excessive, repeated violations can also be used in court to show that the defendant trucking company regularly violates the law and should therefore be punished.
There are different types of citations that can be evidence of an unsafe trucking company. First, citations against the driver for traffic violations are an important indicator of the safety of the driver. If a driver has numerous tickets for speeding or reckless driving, the trucking company should take action to stop the behavior. If not, the company itself should be held accountable when the unsafe driver causes an accident. Secondly, The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) ensures that trucking companies comply with all safety regulations promulgated by the United States Department of Transportation. Last year, the FMCSA issued over $33,000,000.00 in penalties against trucking and bus companies for safety violations of all sorts.
The law requires drivers to report any condition of the truck that is in need of repair and they are forbidden to operate the truck if it is unsafe. Any deviation from this regulation could result in a penalty being assessed against the trucking company.
If you have been injured or a loved on injured or killed in a truck accident, it is very important that you have competent lawyer present at the start of the investigation to preserve your rights. Contact Houston truck accident lawyer Michael P. Fleming for a free consultation.