Do Truck Drivers on Georgia Highways Get Enough Sleep?


August 02, 2016

Trucking accounts for a large portion of interstate commerce. Consumers rely on truckers to deliver food and commodities that Georgia citizens need every day. Most truck drivers travel the roadways safely.  However, there is a growing concern that truckers are simply not getting enough sleep, which is leading to serious accidents causing injuries and death. Currently, truckers are not supposed to be on duty for more than 14 consecutive hours. During the 14 hour period, they may drive no more than 11 hours at one time without sleeping. Moreover, truckers must have at least 10 consecutive hours of sleep before they can begin their next driving shift.

You can imagine that it is very difficult to track the amount of time truck drivers sleep, so some truck drivers are working well beyond the 11 hour maximum. Recent research has shown that if people remain awake for 24 hours straight, their bodies respond as if they have blood alcohol concentration of 0.10.  These concerning results indicate that driving while sleep deprived can be as dangerous as driving while intoxicated.

Common Trucking Accidents Caused By Sleep Deprivation

There are countless ways to be involved in trucking accidents caused by sleep deprived truck drivers, however, the list below includes some of the most common accidents you may see or be involved in on a highway, among others:

  • A truck driver veers off the side of the highway after falling asleep, causing the truck to flip on its side;
  • A truck driver fails to see a vehicle in front of it after falling asleep, and ends up slamming into the back of the vehicle;
  • A truck jackknifes, crossing the median on a highway and colliding with oncoming traffic;
  • A truck driver changes lanes with the mistaken belief that the neighboring lane is free of traffic, causing a collision with another vehicle; and
  • A truck driver nearly misses an exit, and instead of going to the next exit, the driver instead tries to turn quickly to make the intended exit, causing the truck to flip or collide with another vehicle

Many trucking accidents that involve sleep deprivation do not necessarily occur after a truck driver has fallen asleep. Truck drivers are often involved in accidents because they do not have the quick reflexes that they ordinarily have after being well rested. They may be well aware that they are driving, but get "road hypnosis," where they cannot react quickly to avoid an accident. Further, many truck drivers have become reliant on coffee and energy drinks. These products are "quick fixes" and can actually make truck drivers crash, further impairing their ability to safely drive a heavy tractor trailer.

If you suffered an injury as a result of a trucking accident, it is best to seek the advice of an attorney at Montlick & Associates who can examine the facts and circumstances of your truck accident and advise you on what steps are necessary to protect your rights to compensation, which can include a monetary recoveries for medical expenses, lost income, Pain and Suffering, and more.

Put Our Law Firm's Over 30 Years of Legal Experience to Work For Your Case!

If you or a loved one has been in any type of accident involving negligence, contact the attorneys at Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law. For over 30 years, our firm has assisted thousands of injured clients across Georgia. Our compassionate law firm offers you a free consultation to explain your legal rights and the actions necessary to protect your legal rights.

No matter where you are located, our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law
17 Executive Park Dr NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
(404) 529-6333
(800) LAW-NEED

Category: Truck Accidents

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.