Truck drivers must follow FMCSA regulations regarding texting

An often quoted fact is that when drivers text, they spend on average 4.6 seconds with their eyes diverted from the road. If they are going 55 miles per hour at the time, they are essentially driving blind for around the length of a football field. When truck drivers text, they are far more likely to experience a truck accident or other safety critical event than drivers who do not.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has put regulations in place prohibiting interstate truck drivers from texting while driving. According to the FMCSA, texting means to manually type information into an electronic device or simply read information from an electronic device. Texting may include such acts as sending or accessing instant messages, using short message service, accessing email and surfing Internet Web pages.

Truck drivers are restricted from holding or reaching for a mobile phone to initiate voice communication. Drivers cannot push more than one key to dial a mobile device when behind the wheel. Additionally, truck drivers may only use hands-free mobile devices, which must be close at hand.

Truckers who are caught in the act of texting or talking with a hand-held mobile device while driving may be issued sanctions. These sanctions can include fines of as much as $2,750. They may also face revocation of driver qualifications for repeated instances of these offenses.

Truck companies can also be fined, as much as $11,000, should it be discovered that they demanded or permitted their drivers to operate a hand-held mobile device to make calls or text while driving.

Victims of truck accidents caused by texting while driving should be entitled to compensation for such things as medical expenses and pain and suffering. Determining liability in a truck accident involves conducting the detailed investigation that could possibly be carried out by a California truck accident attorney. The evidence gathered by a comprehensive investigation may help an accident victim in their pursuit of justice and compensation.

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