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San Antonio Truck Accident Lawyer > Blog > Fatigued Truck Driver Accident > Why are Log Books So Important in Truck Accident Cases?

Why are Log Books So Important in Truck Accident Cases?


When it comes to transportation, safety is of paramount importance. This is especially true when 18-wheelers and other large commercial trucks are on the roadways. A truck accident can have dire consequences for those involved. It is important to understand the intricacies in these accidents and one element is scrutinizing the trucker’s logbook. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for truck drivers to manipulate and cheat on their logbooks. Below, our San Antonio fatigued truck driver accident lawyer explains further.

What is a Logbook? 

All truck drivers in Texas, and throughout the United States, are required to comply with the hours of service rule established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This rule outlines the amount of time truck drivers can remain on the road, along with other rules. For property-carrying drivers, the time limits are as follows:

  • Drivers can drive up to 11 hours after being off-duty for ten consecutive hours.
  • After coming on duty, drivers cannot drive past the 14th consecutive hour after ten consecutive hours of being off duty. Any off duty time does not extend the 14 hours.
  • After working for eight cumulative hours without a 30-minute rest, drivers must take a 30-minute break.
  • Truck drivers may not drive after being on the road for 60 hours in seven consecutive days, or for 70 hours in eight consecutive days. After taking 34 consecutive days off, or more, truck drivers can restart the seven or eight day period.

The above rules are intended to prevent truck driver fatigue, which is one of the most common causes of truck accidents. The law also requires truck drivers to keep a logbook showing the number of hours they drove, and their periods of rest.

Issues with Logbook Compliance 

Although the law is very clear about the hours of service a truck driver can perform, and maintaining log books properly, drivers and the trucking companies they work for do not always comply with them. Trucking companies know that the more cargo they can move, the more profit they can make. They often encourage drivers to break the law by staying on the road longer than allowed to make tight deadlines. To get around the law, some drivers and trucking companies may manipulate or falsify logbooks.

To enhance compliance and reduce the risks that come with manual logbooks, the FMCSA mandated electronic logging devices (ELDs) in 2017. These logbooks are much more sophisticated and they automatically log a driver’s service hours. While this does eliminate the potential for manipulation and human error, not everyone wants to comply with this law, either. It can be expensive for trucking companies to install these devices, and they may not always ensure they are properly maintained.

Our Fatigued Truck Driver Accident Lawyer in San Antonio Can Collect Important Evidence 

If you have been in a truck accident, you may face many challenges when filing a claim against the liable party. One of these is collecting important evidence such as the logbook. At the Law Office of Israel Garcia, our San Antonio fatigued truck driver accident lawyer can collect this important evidence to prove your case so you obtain a fair settlement. Call us now at 210-LAW-9999 or contact us online to schedule a consultation and to get the legal help you need.



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