Truck drivers in North Carolina and across the U.S. are still required to take a 30-minute break during their shift, according to a decision by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The decision, which was announced in August, came in response to a petition by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance seeking to rescind the breaks.
Truck drivers have been required to take a 30-minute rest break within the first eight hours of their shifts since July 1, 2013. However, the CVSA filed a petition in 2015 seeking to have the regulation overturned. The group, which represents North American bus and truck inspectors, claimed the rule is difficult to enforce, easy to falsify in duty logs and does little to promote highway safety.
In its decision to retain the rule, the FMCSA defended the safety benefits of 30-minute breaks and noted that a federal appeals court upheld the requirement in August 2013. The agency also argued that data fails to support CVSA’s claim that the regulation is difficult to enforce.
Commercial truck accidents can be caused by a number of factors, including driver fatigue, driver negligence, defective auto parts and improper vehicle maintenance. North Carolina residents injured in a truck accident could have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver and/or the trucking company itself. Possible damages in such a lawsuit include medical expenses, lost wages, property loss and pain and suffering. An attorney who has experience with these matters can assist in pinpointing responsibility for the accident through a review of the police investigation report, trucker logs, maintenance records and other evidence.
Source: Overdrive Online, “FMCSA denies inspectors’ request to rescind 30-minute break rule,” James Jaillet, Aug. 31, 2016