The Experience of Driving a Regular Car isn't Enough to Qualify a Person to Sit Behind the Wheel of a Semi-Truck
DALLAS, TX / ACCESSWIRE / April 9, 2017 / Most people remember how nervous they were the first time they got behind the wheel of a car. There's a good reason why the law requires young people to take a student driving course before they receive a driver's license. Classroom instruction, as well as a certain number of hours behind the wheel, ensure that everyone on the road stays safer.
Texas truck accident lawyer Amy Witherite explains, "Driving a semi-truck safely requires a tremendous amount of experience and skill. When truckers are allowed to get on the road with very few driving hours under their belts, statistics show that they're more likely to cause a serious or fatal accident."
For truck drivers, the experience of driving a regular car isn't enough to qualify them to sit behind the wheel of a semi-truck. According to federal law, individuals must complete both classroom courses and real-world driving time (not a simulator) to receive a commercial driver's license.
However, the federal rules don't require truckers to complete a minimum number of hours on the road - something that surprises many people.
Education Requirements for Truck Drivers
When you think about how massive a semi-truck is, it's shocking to think that there are no minimum training hours required for truckers just learning how to drive a big rig.
Although rules set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) require truckers to complete driving curriculum, as well as on-the-road hours, the law doesn't set a specific amount of time for either of these courses. Instead, that's left up to the individual training providers.
Furthermore, federal rules don't require training providers to be accredited by any third party organization before they're allowed to provide truck driver training. Also, individual instructors aren't required to be certified by any authority or organization. Instead, the rule allows for a "self-certification process" that requires trainers to "attest, under penalties of perjury, that they comply with the Federal requirements - including instructor qualifications - in order to be eligible."
Crash Stats for New Truck Drivers
Experience tends to make people better at their jobs. This is true for a variety of professions, including trucking. According to a study conducted by the Department of Transportation, semi-truck drivers with less than five years of experience driving tractor-trailers were 41 percent more likely to be involved in an accident compared to drivers with five or more years on the road.
If you have been injured in a semi-truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Don't wait to speak to an attorney. Call an experienced Texas truck accident lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your case.
SOURCE: Eberstein & Witherite, LLP via submit Press Release 123