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Truck Driver Logs

June 27, 2014Firm News,Vehicle Safety

Why Truck Driver Logs are Important

Federal regulations demand that all truck drivers maintain a log recording their activities, a record of cargo and a record of proper truck maintenance. Logs are inspected to ensure that drivers are taking proper rest periods to avoid tired driving and to make sure that the truck is being kept in safe working order.

In Missouri, logbook violations are punishable by a $300 fine. Logbook violations include:

  • Failure to properly maintain the logbook
  • Failure to produce the logbook when required by law
  • Keeping multiple logbooks for the purpose of deceiving investigators

In the event of a truck accident, the logbook can help investigators understand possible factors leading up to the accident. Truck accident injuries can be particularly devastating due to the massive size of commercial trucks.

Electronic On-Board Recorder Evidence

In addition to keeping written logs, some commercial trucks are equipped with electronic on-board recorders (EOBR). One of the primary functions of these devices is to keep track of hours of operation to see if drivers are complying with hours of service (HOS) regulations. EOBR devices are more difficult to manipulate and change than written driver logs.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is close to implementing EOBR devices for all drivers, even those who currently use written logs only. The FMCSA believes that this would increase accountability and therefore increase overall driver safety. According to the administration’s 2011 analysis of driver logs and EOBRs, 1.2 million out of 3.5 million drivers surveyed were cited for violations. Nearly half of those violations were HOS violations.

EOBR devices, as well as driver logs, can serve as crucial evidence in the event of a commercial truck accident. These devices record where a driver drives, where they stop, and the length of time they rest and drive. Although implementing industry-wide EOBR requirements would be costly, the FMCSA believes it would ultimately save lives and prevent a number of unnecessary collisions. EOBR and driver logs are important because they increase accountability.

If a driver violates Hours of Service (HOS) regulations, then they could face fines. HOS regulations are in place, primarily, to prevent truck driver fatigue. By controlling the number of hours a driver operates his or her vehicle consecutively, the FMCSA believes that fewer truckers will fall asleep at the wheel.

Contact an Experienced Goldblatt Singer Attorney

If you or a loved one has been injured by a truck accident, you need to contact a St. Louis truck accident attorney as soon as possible to help you seek compensation. Truck logs are required to be kept for only a short period of time so you need to act quickly to ensure that all evidence regarding your case can be preserved. Goldblatt Singer attorneys have earned a reputation for skillfully pursuing justice for our clients.

We understand federal and state trucking regulations as well as the complex insurance regulations in the trucking industry. Insurance companies will act quickly to try and settle the case for the least amount of compensation possible. Goldblatt Singer St. Louis auto accident injury attorneys will protect your interests from the moment we take on your case. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.

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