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Was the Truck Driver Who Hit You Asleep at the Wheel?

Posted on in Truck Accidents

IL accident lawyerOne of the leading causes of truck accidents is driver fatigue. A tired driver can be just as dangerous as a drunk driver. When a person becomes sleep-deprived and exhausted, they become prone to making mistakes that they would not normally make. Fatigued drivers may miss important road signs, forget to check their blind spots, or even drive more aggressively than usual due to irritability. Unfortunately, there is no roadside tiredness test. A drunk driver may not be able to walk a straight line, but a tired driver may be wide awake right after the crash. Of course, drug or alcohol use can contribute to a driver’s tiredness as well. If you suspect that driver fatigue was a factor in your truck accident, your attorney can try to seek out evidence of the driver’s tiredness.

What Evidence Can Be Used to Show Driver Fatigue?

While it can be very difficult to tell whether a truck driver was overly tired before a crash, certain types of evidence can be used to suggest that driver fatigue was a factor. Helpful evidence may include:

  • Hours of service logs - There are strict federal and state regulations that govern how long a commercial truck driver can keep going without a break, and how long that break must be. Drivers should be keeping a log, which should be corroborated automatically by software installed on the truck. If they broke federal or state law and have not been taking proper rest breaks, this can show that the driver was probably fatigued at the time of the crash.
  • Drug tests - After causing an accident, a truck driver should be tested for drugs and alcohol promptly. The presence of “downers” like alcohol, benzodiazepines, or opiates, can suggest that the driver may have been very sleepy when he caused the crash.
  • Witness testimony - If you were on a populated road, another driver or bystander may have seen signs that the driver was falling asleep. If the driver made a recent stop, someone may have observed them appearing fatigued. They may have purchased coffee or an energy drink, suggesting that they were struggling to stay alert.
  • Type of accident - When a driver falls asleep at the wheel, they often drift out of their lane. Sideswipe accidents or head-on collisions are common results.

Tired truck drivers cause far too many accidents. If you were injured by a fatigued driver, there may be evidence available showing that their fatigue contributed to or caused the crash.

Call a Lake County Truck Accident Lawyer

Salvi & Maher, L.L.C. is committed to helping people who have been harmed by a negligent truck driver recover compensation. Our dedicated Waukegan truck accident attorneys will conduct a full investigation to seek out any evidence that may help prove your claim. Contact us at 847-662-3303 for a free consultation.




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