Federal Compliance Accident info

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Federal Compliance accidents attorneys in California

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported that there were 1,871,452 inspections of commercial motor vehicles and/or drivers by Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) Inspectors in fiscal year 2019, as of April 26, 2019. While 810,250 inspections had no violations, the other 1,061,202 had violations and there were 3,055,802 violations in total. Of those inspections, 1,809,114 were state inspections and 62,338 were federal.

MCSAP Inspectors conduct roadside inspections on commercial motor vehicles and drivers to check that they are in compliance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) and/or Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMRs). When an inspection results in serious violations, a driver is issued a driver or vehicle Out-of-Service (OOS) Order that needs to be corrected before the driver or vehicle can return to service.

Despite strict federal rules relating to commercial motor vehicles, many trucks are operated in non-compliance with federal regulations. Certain violations can lead to serious traffic accidents that can cause catastrophic or possibly even fatal injuries.

California Federal Compliance Truck Accident Attorney

Did you sustain severe injuries or was your loved one killed in a truck accident that might not have been compliant with federal law in California? Do not wait to contact an experienced lawyer who can immediately conduct an independent investigation.

The May Firm understands federal truck regulations and can identify when a vehicle was not compliant with federal law. We can answer all of your legal questions as soon as you call (844) 629-3476 or contact us online to take advantage of a free consultation.

Types of Truck Accident Injuries Caused by Federal Compliance Issues

The kind of accident that a commercial truck causes and the injuries that result from it can vary depending on what federal regulation was violated. An unsafe truck could be at fault for a number of different kinds of accidents, and some of these accidents can lead to fatal injuries.

When a person is killed in a commercial truck accident, the family can file a wrongful death action to recover damages. People who survive their injuries still face very difficult paths to recovery, and some injuries will not allow for a complete recovery.

Common injuries in crashes caused by violations of federal law include, but are not limited to:

  • Lacerations
  • Paralysis
  • Internal organ injuries
  • Fractures
  • Neck injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Muscle strains
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Sprains

An insurance company may contact you very soon after your accident and extend an offer for a lump sum settlement. Get yourself a lawyer who can fight to get you a better offer, as most initial settlement proposals are woefully short of what victims are actually entitled to.

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Common Violations of Federal Law

Compliance, Safety and Accountability Points (CSA Points) are part of a safety enforcement program administered by FMCSA. Idealease, Inc., a truck leasing and rental company, produced a June 2016 seminar that touched on the six most common CSA violations.

The violations included three truck violations and three driver violations. The truck violations were:

  • Lighting – Idealease reported that 28 percent of all roadside vehicle violations last year in 2.4 million inspections dealt with lights or reflective materials. Light violations are a severity point assessment of six CSA points and a conspicuity of reflective tape violations are three CSA points.
  • Brakes – According to Idealease, 25 percent of vehicle violations are for brakes. There were more than 1 million brake violations in 2015, each with four CSA points.
  • Tires – Idealease said 11 percent of vehicle violations were for tires, and half involved tread depth. Tire violations have a CSA severity of eight points.

As it related to drivers, the three most common violations included:

  • Log – According to Idealease, 25% of all driver violations at the roadside are “Form & Manner” and “Log Not Current” violations, by far the most of any violation. A form/manner violation is just one CSA point, but a log that isn’t current is five CSA points.
  • Medical Issues – Idealease reported that 12 percent of driver violations were related to medical issues, usually a failure to have a valid medical certificate. While these are customarily one or two CSA point violations, driving while physically ill is a 10-point violation.
  • English Ability – According to Idealease, this violation has been surging recently, now at 9 percent of all driver violations. A violation is four CSA points and a driver needs to be able to fill out paperwork, speak with officers, and answer their questions, all in English.

Idealease noted that a Safety Investigator (SI) investigating a motor carrier will look at driver history for egregious violations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs). Such violations are occasionally referred to as Red Flag Violations and are always investigated
as part of a carrier investigation, and the SI will look to see if the violation was corrected.

There are currently a dozen Red Flag Violations, including:

  • Operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) with more than one driver’s license – Driver Fitness, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) § 383.21
  • Operating a CMV without a valid commercial driver’s license (CDL) – Driver Fitness, CFR § 383.23(a)(2)
  • Driving a CMV (CDL) while disqualified – Driver Fitness, CFR § 383.51(a)
  • Operating a CMV with improper CDL group – Driver Fitness, CFR § 383.91(a)
  • Unqualified Driver – Driver Fitness, CFR § 391.11
  • Driver lacking valid license for type of vehicle being operated – Driver Fitness, CFR § 391.11(b)(5)
  • Driver disqualified from operating a CMV – Driver Fitness, CFR § 391.11(b)(7)
  • Driving a CMV while disqualified – Driver Fitness, CFR § 391.15(a)
  • Driver uses or is in possession of drugs – Controlled Substances/Alcohol, CFR § 392.4(a)
  • Possession/use/under influence of alcohol less than 4 hours prior to duty – Controlled Substances/Alcohol, CFR § 392.5(a)
  • Driving after being declared OOS – Fatigued Driving (HOS), CFR § 395.13(d)
  • Operating an OOS vehicle – Vehicle Maintenance, CFR § 396.9(c)(2)
Contact a Federal Compliance Truck Accident Lawyer in California

If you suffered serious injuries or your loved one was killed in a truck accident caused by failure to comply with federal regulations in California, you are going to need the help of a skilled attorney. The May Firm can provide regular updates about your case and will always answer your phone call or return the call as promptly as possible.

We have seven offices in California, including locations in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria, Bakersfield, Fresno, Long Beach, and Chula Vista. Call (844) 629-3476 or contact us online to set up a free consultation.

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