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Oregon Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Violations Lawyers - Bend/Portland, OR

Most trucking operations are interstate, meaning they operate in multiple states throughout the country.  This is why a federal agency has enacted certain regulations which govern the conduct of truck drivers and trucking companies no matter what state the driver is coming from, driving through, or going to.  The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA, created these strict regulations to apply as the minimum requirements for truck drivers and trucing companies throughout the United States.   While there are many reasons why the FMCSA has enacted these regulations, safety is the overarching goal through most of the regulations.  This is because FMCSA violations could result in serious personal injuries or the wrongful death of an innocent person.  If you or a loved one have been injured in any trucking accident caused by FMCSA violations, please call our Oregon lawyers for federal motor carrier safety administration (FMCSA) violations that hurt you or a loved one to learn how we can help protect your rights.

Why FMCSA Regulations are Important

FMCSA violations are incredibly bad, even if it is just a minor violation.  This is because FMCSA regulations set forth the minimum standard and requirements that a trucking company and truck driver must always follow, in addition to any other state laws where the truck is actually operating in.

Most of the regulations pertain to three general areas.  The first are equipment regulations which govern what parts truck must have and how the truck must be maintained.  The second are truck driver and trucking company conduct in the actual operation of the vehicle.  The third are the obligations on trucking companies with their drivers, including post-accident tests and evaluations of truck drivers and big rigs.  All of these general types of regulations involve safety considerations, whether the regulations be expressly written in terms of safety of whether the impact of the regulations results in safer operation of the commercial truck.

Liability for FMCSA Violations

When a truck driver or trucking company commit FMCSA violations, they may be fined and could be subjected to even greater penalties such as losing a license to drive or operate.  But when FMCSA violations result in serious personal injury trucking accidents or wrongful deaths, truck drivers and trucking company may be exposed to civil liability for their actions in addition to FMCSA penalties and criminal offenses.

When a truck driver or trucking company violates a FMCSA regulation and such violation causes personal injuries to an innocent person, the doctrine of negligence per se may be a useful tool by a victim to help establish that the truck driver was negligent.  This is because a violation of a regulation that is meant to protect someone from harm, and the violation causes that harm, results in an automatic finding of negligence if the violation was from a statute (state law) or can be used as evidence of negligence if the violation was from a regulation (agency rule).  

This means that victims of Oregon FMCSA violations may be entitled to a negligence per se claim against a truck driver and trucking company which demonstrates evidence of negligence by the sheer fact that a FMCSA regulation was violated and it hurt the victim.

Common FMCSA Violations Which May Result in Liability 

There are several FMCSA violations which may result in liability if an innocent person is injured by the actions of a negligent truck driver or trucking company.  This includes some fo the following common FMCSA violations:

  • No alcohol use or drug use, even 4 hours before a shift – While other drivers are allowed to have BAC of .08, and CDL drivers a .04, under the FMCSA truck drivers are not allowed any BAC and are actually prohibited form consuming alcohol within 4 hours of starting the next shift.  This is must more restrictive than any other state law.
  • Hours of Service – Truck drivers are allowed to work 14 hours of a 24 hour period, and drive no more than 10 of those hours in total and no more than 8 consecutive hours without taking a 30 minute break.
  • Inclement weather – During hazardous weather conditions, truck drivers must use “extreme caution” and slow down to the point were travel can be made safely.  If a truck driver cannot safely operate the large commercial vehicle, he or she must stop until safe operation can be resumed.  This includes weather such as snow, ice, sleet, fog, mist, dust, smoke, or other conditions which may become dangerous to drive due to decreased traction or decreased visibility.
  • Inspecting cargo – Truck drivers must inspect cargo that is secured on the trailer multiple times during the delivery, including once within the first 50 miles to check for the need to do adjustments due to shifting or sliding.
  • Equipment regulations – Steering columns, brakes, and wheels must be kept in a well-maintained manner.  There are significant regulations relating to the wheel care, including if there is damage to the side wall, ply showing, tears, or other deformities.
  • Disabled trucks – When a truck is disabled on the side of the road, a truck driver must immediately put on hazard lights and within ten minutes place cones and warning signs to warn oncoming motorists of the disabled truck.

Bend/Portland, Oregon Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Violations Lawyers

Victims injured by federal motor carrier safety administration (FMCSA) violations should call our law firm.  If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed as a result of a trucking accident or collision contact the Oregon Truck Accident Lawyers at Kuhlman Law at our number below or fill out the intake form.  We offer a free initial case evaluation and handle cases on a contingency fee which means that you pay no money unless we recover.  

We handle cases throughout the state including Bend and Portland Oregon, Redmond, Central Oregon, Multnomah County, Deschutes County, Salem, Eugene, Corvallis, Lane County, Medford, Gresham, Albany, Medford, Beaverton, Umatilla, Pendleton, and Hillsboro.  

We also have an office in Minneapolis, Minnesota and take Trucking accident cases throughout the Twin Cities, including St. Paul, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Dakota County, Washington County, Anoka County, Scott County, Blaine, Stillwater, and Saint Paul Minnesota.  

Please act quickly, there is a limited time (Statute of Limitations) in which you can bring a claim under the law. 

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