Author: R. Clayton Allen, Richmond Truck Accident Lawyer
By law, trucking companies are required to hire and train safe, qualified drivers. When they fail to do so, they become liable for any trucking accident that occurs as a result.
There are many forms of negligence on the part of the trucking company regarding its commercial truck drivers: negligent hiring, negligent supervision, and negligent training, including actions such as:
- Hiring drivers without a valid commercial license (CDL)
- Failing to perform a background check into a driver's safety record
- Not requiring drug and alcohol testing
- Failure to fire a driver when he/she fails a drug test
- Not providing proper training to drivers
- Forcing employees to drive more hours in a day than permitted by law
- Failing to enforce disciplinary action when truck drivers violate regulations
Through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), trucking companies must follow specific guidelines aimed at ensuring the safety of all motorists. For example, a truck driver must have a valid commercial license and drivers must undergo random drug and alcohol testing. When trucking companies are careless or in a hurry to fill vacant truck driver positions, they may overlook background checks or rush through training in an attempt to satisfy commitments to their customers.
When an inexperienced or unqualified driver causes a serious accident, the trucking company is responsible. Safe driving requires a comprehensive safety program with regular review and updates. Many trucking companies do not treat their drivers properly or give them the tools to operate a tractor trailer safely, or recognize the tough job a trucker has.
If you have been injured in a truck accident caused by the negligence of the truck driver or trucking company, you may be able to obtain compensation for your injuries. It is important to contact an experienced tractor trailer accident attorney who understands how to acquire and analyze employee records and training records from the trucking company, including hiring records, dates of employment, training records and other relevant evidence.