Is there a law that limits how many hours a truck driver can drive per day?

Yes, there is a federal law that limits how many hours a truck driver can drive per day. Truck drivers may only drive a total of 11 hours per day. Each shift must be separated by at least 10 hours off the clock, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which regulates the trucking industry.

This means that a truck driver can literally be on the road driving for 11 hours, instead of 10. Most truck drivers don't utilize the extra hour. According to a 2007 survey from the American Trucking Associations (ATA), only 46% of more than 230,000 truck drivers reported using the extra hour, and when they did, it was only for 13% of daily trips.

A total shift, which includes waiting for shipments to be loaded and unloaded, can last a maximum of 14 hours, though.

The FMCSA doesn't necessarily rely on the honor code alone. One way the FMCSA regulates truck driver shifts is through an electronic on-board recording device. This device monitors the length of time the tractor trailer is on the road, the date, time and distance traveled. By June 4, 2012, any monitoring device installed in a truck must meet FMCSA regulations.

Even so, sometimes truck accidents still happen because of driver fatigue from long hours on the road. If you've been injured in an accident with a truck, you will want to seek the services of an Atlanta personal injury attorney. One of the first things an Atlanta personal injury attorney will consider is the length of the driver's shift.

It may also be possible that if a truck driver worked beyond the maximum hours allowed by law, the trucking company that employs them may also be liable for any injuries you sustained. An Atlanta personal injury attorney can look at the specifics of your case and help you determine all liable parties you may be able to take legal action against.

Contacting an Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney

If you are the victim of someone else's negligence or carelessness, whether in a truck accident or some other type of accident, you have certain rights guaranteed by law.  To help you understand these rights and seek the compensation you may be eligible for to help get your life back in order, contact the Atlanta Law Offices of Sheryl L. Burke for a no-cost consultation on your injury case.