A driver who apparently fell asleep at the wheel is being blamed for a truck accident that happened early this morning on Interstate 5. The big rig rolled over and partially blocked the highway, which snarled traffic for hours.
According to reports, the semi truck rollover involved in injury of a passenger of the big rig. The semi truck was carrying 20,000 pounds of frozen fish when it rolled over due to the reportedly asleep driver. According to police, the truck and trailer swerved across the roadway ultimately resulting in a loss of control for the tractor-trailer.
The truck driver was cited for failure to maintain a lane of traffic.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations have specific requirements relating to hours of service for commercial truck drivers. The rules are contained in Section 395 and have recently been modified by the rule making authority of the US Department of Transportation. The new rules will be effective July 1, 2013.
The purpose of the rules is to reduce the number of accidents due to fatigue or sleepy drivers and the rules reduce the maximum hours a truck driver can work within a week from eighty-two hours to seventy hours.
Fatigued drivers and drivers to fall asleep at the wheel account for a small but important number of fatal truck accidents. The rules that apply to truck drivers were enacted to reduce the number of truck accident fatalities in the United States.