The transportation industry does not impose daily driving maximums on truck drivers because they want to control their earnings. These measures are in place to ensure the safety of the drivers and the innocent motorists on the road. When a truck driver voluntarily or involuntarily fails to abide by this guideline, they can be found liable for any damages or losses incurred. If a tired driver injured you or a loved one, you may have a path toward compensation.

The Perpetrator

Often, when an accident involves a commercial truck, victims find that everyone involved is simply attempting to pass the blame. In the case of a fatigued driver, a driver may claim that their employer forced them to drive, and the truck company will argue that the driver acted on their own, but neither argument is valid. 

A driver can deny a load if it extends their regulatory on-duty schedule. Trucking companies have monitoring software that tracks when a truck is in motion and how long its driver has been on duty. Therefore, in the event of the accident, both parties can be deemed the perpetrator and held legally responsible for the losses you incur. 

Preserving Evidence

A collision with a truck driven by a tired driver is often catastrophic. There are property damages, long-term medical costs, and other costly expenses for the victims involved. Unfortunately, some truck companies will do anything to lower their financial liability, including removing evidence.

These victims must partner with an attorney right away. If necessary, an attorney will request the trucking company and the Department of Transportation to ensure all the driver's records are preserved and submitted for review. These records will be vital in proving your case. 

Punitive Damages

Whether the driver decided to continue to drive fatigued on their own or their employer prompted this action, this display of negligence is often considered gross in the eyes of the law. For this reason, the court will sometimes award victims in this scenario punitive damages. 

Punitive damages are above and beyond things like payment for medical bills, missed time from work, and even pain and suffering. This form of compensation is an additional penalty imposed on the negligent parties to highlight the severity and degree of their actions. 

Filing a suit against a commercial truck driver is essentially the equivalent of filing a claim against two corporations: the trucking company and the insurance company. Ensure you have trusted representation on your side to protect your interest.

To get started, contact a truck accident lawyer in your area.