Driving a big rig takes much more training and special skills than operating a passenger vehicle. In order to drive a tractor-trailer, a trucker must obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and keep all licensing requirements up to date. If you are in an accident, it is vital that you speak with our truck crash attorneys to determine if there’s a problem with the trucker’s CDL.
Your Trucker May Have Been Driving With an Invalid CDL
Just as employers have a responsibility to ensure their drivers comply with federal trucking regulations, they can also be liable if drivers do not have a valid CDL. For example, the carrier may be held responsible in cases involving:
In addition to passing rigorous driving and written testing to get a CDL, truckers must also pass pre-employment screenings for controlled substances. Employers must add these results and other documentation (including a trucker’s driving history, criminal history, and medical examinations) to the driver’s qualification file.
Any trucker with less than one year of experience operating a commercial motor vehicle is considered an entry-level driver and must complete specific training on braking, turning, securing cargo, and coupling/uncoupling.
Wrong license for load.
Under The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations, all truckers must have the appropriate license for the type and weight of the load they are carrying. This may be important if the trucker in your case was carrying a particularly heavy load or transporting hazardous materials without an endorsement.
Expired or invalid license.
Trucking companies have a duty to ensure that all of their drivers have valid commercial licenses. If drivers lie on job applications or allow their CDLs to expire during employment, it could have a bearing on your truck crash case—especially if the employer was aware of non-compliance.
While trucking companies have considerable insurance coverage under their commercial auto policies, they are also skilled at fighting claims instead of paying victims.
Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?
If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Warwick office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.