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Jeff Krawitz is a Shareholder and member of Stark & Stark’s Accident & Personal Injury Group.

On August 21, 2018, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) announced that it has commenced a rulemaking process that is aimed at reforming specific areas of the current hours-of-service regulation. The hours-of-service (HOS) regulation was enacted to limit the total operating hours a commercial truck driver works on duty. The FMCSA will be examining four areas of the existing regulation. Once decided, the new rules, will be published as an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

Continue Reading Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Announces Potential Reform of Hours of Service Regulations

Two U.S. senators have introduced a bipartisan bill which aims to change and improve truck safety standards. The goal is to prevent the often deadly crashes which occur when a car slams under a tractor trailer in a collision. With the bill, trucks would be required to be equipped with underride guards.

These side guards are safety devices which cover the exposed space between the undercarriage of a tractor trailer and the road below. By equipping trucks with side guards, it will prevent cars from sliding under trucks in a collision and increasing the likelihood of an already dangerous crashing turning even deadlier.

Continue Reading Truck Side Guard Bill Introduced After Deadly Crashes

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has specific rules that prohibit Interstate truck and bus drivers and those who are moving quantities of hazardous materials that require placards from texting and/or using hand held mobile phone devices while driving/operating motor vehicles. Violations can result in fines and disqualifications that will impact a motor carrier’s safety measurement. Plain and simple, commercial motor vehicle operators cannot text while driving. Apparently, there is an issue as to what defines “texting”. It has been defined by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to mean manually entering alpha numeric text into, or reading text from, an electronic device. This rule is also used to impose sanctions including civil penalties and disqualifications from operating a commercial motor vehicle in Interstate Commerce for all drivers who have failed to be in compliance.
Continue Reading Texting and Mobile Phone Restrictions for Truck Drivers

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has the ability to declare transportation companies and trucking companies as imminent hazards to public safety and order trucking companies to immediately cease operations and provision of services. They can obtain Orders for imminent hazard “out-of-service” and this is usually done after a review of the company’s operations.
Continue Reading Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has Powers to Declare Trucking Companies “Imminent Hazard to the Public”

Recently, as part of the hours of service, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) held public sessions across the country to encourage various advocates, drivers, trucking companies, law enforcement agencies and even the public to share their input on truck driver rest time and the safety and operation of commercial vehicles.
Continue Reading U.S. Departmen of Transportation Acts to Ensure Truck Driver Rest Time and Improve Safety in Operation of Commercial Vehicles

There was a computer-assisted investigation by the U.S. Department of Transportation using heavy truck inspection data from 2003 to 2008 for Northwest Indiana. Some of the statistics are startling and are derived from State Police and Federal Inspectors checking 34,856 heavy trucks (i.e. semi trailers, buses and other heavy commercial vehicles) in Lake and Porter counties in Northwest Indiana between 2003 and 2008.
Continue Reading Recent Investigation Into Long-Haul Trucking Violations