On May 25, 2014, during Memorial Day weekend, a significant motor vehicle accident occurred on I-20 near the Richland and Kershaw county lines. This accident is currently under investigation by the South Carolina Highway Parol, and the cause of the crash has not been released. The crash caused both westbound and eastbound lanes of I-20 near the Kershaw County and Richland County lines to be closed for most of the day.
Two cars were significantly damaged in the collision that also involved a large tractor trailer semi-truck. A small truck was overturned, and a red mustang had the top of the car torn off. The 18-wheeler did not appear to sustain as severe of property damage. The extend of the injuries caused by this accident is currently unknown, but significant trauma was reported because persons were transported from the to Palmetto Health Richland in Columbia by helicopter. To learn about common causes of truck accidents, read this article.
Our prayers go the drivers, passengers, and families of those involved in this accident. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a accident involving a car or truck, we are here to help you. Truck accidents cause significant injuries, and many times result in wrongful death. Please contact us today to see if we can help you and your family recover from trucking related accidents. We will work to secure the financial compensation that you deserve. Please call Robert F. Goings of the Goings Law Firm, LLC at (803) 350-9230 for a free case evaluation.
May 15, 2014 — Orangeburg, SC
On Thursday morning, May 15, 2014, three people were killed in a single vehicle truck accident on I-26 in Orangburg County, South Carolina. The accident occurred when the 18 wheeler drove off the Interstate and into an embankment colliding into the multiple trees. The accident is under investigation and the cause is currently unknown. Typically single vehicle accidents occur due to driving inattention, distracted driving, and many times a driver being tried or falling asleep.
Our condolences and prayers go the families of those killed in this tragic accident. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a truck accident, we understand the significant suffering that these tragic accidents can cause. Truck accidents cause significant injuries, and many times result in wrongful death. Please contact us today to see if we can help you and your family recover from trucking related accidents. We will work to secure the financial compensation that you deserve. Please call Robert F. Goings of the Goings Law Firm, LLC at (803) 350-9230 for a free case evaluation.
By: Robert F. Goings
Trucking Accidents: Driver Fatigue and Log Book Violations in South Carolina
Owners and drivers of 18-wheelers and other over-the-road commercial vehicles must comply with Federal hours of service laws:
- No more than 11 hours driving following 10 consecutive hours off duty.
- No more than 14 total hours driving and working after starting his shift
- No more than 60 hours in an 7-day period or 70 hours in 8 days
Studies show that truck drivers who exceed these limits are more likely to drive carelessly because they are sleepy, less alert and react slower to crisis situations. In some cases, truck drivers do not follow the hours of service laws because truckers are often paid per mile. The more miles, the money a truck driver can earn. Trucking company sometimes turn a blind eye to this misconduct, and on occasion, drivers are pressured by the trucking company to speed or exceed Hours of Service to meet delivery deadlines.
Commercial truck drivers are required to keep a detailed log book in order to comply with Hours of Service (HOS) regulations. Truck drivers are required to record their duty status every 24 hours, including total miles driven, total hours worked, and inspections of the operating conditions of their vehicles and equipment such brakes, steering mechanisms, lighting, conspicuity tape, tires, horn, windshield wipers, mirrors, coupling devices, cargo doors and load securing equipment. In order to hide hours of service violations – some truck drivers have illegally falsify their log books. Surveys indicate that between 25% and 75% of drivers violate the rules. Not surprisingly, many accidents can stem from hours of service and log book violations.
Why do Truck Drivers Violate Hours of Service and Log Book Laws?
Long-haul drivers are normally paid by the mile, not by the hour. Truck drivers are not allowed to receive overtime pay for hours worked in excess of the standard 40-hour work week. Some drivers may choose to violate the Hours of Service to earn more money. Being paid by the mile, any work performed that is not actual driving is of no value to the driver, providing incentive to falsify the amount of time spent performing non-driving duties. Drivers can get away with this rule-breaking due to their paper-based log books. As a driver records their time spent behind the wheel, there is very little to stop them from forging their log books.
How to Prove Hours of Service and Log Book Violations?
It is the trucking company’s responsibility that drivers are not falsifying log books and violating the hours of service laws. Sometimes the ability to prove hours or service or log book violations can for the basis of a lawsuit against the driver and the trucking company for negligence, gross negligence, and willful conduct. In order to prove log book violations, an experienced truck accident injury attorney may be able to use satellite tracking (GPS) records, the truck’s “black box” data recorder, phone records, gas receipts, bills of lading, witness accounts and other information to prove that the driver falsified log books.
Contact to a Truck Accident Law Firm in Columbia, South Carolina.
If you have any questions about truck accidents in South Carolina that may involve potential hours of service or log book violations, please feel free to contact a our Truck Accident Attorneys today for a free consultation. In order to preserve the evidence, it is best to contact an attorney without delay. The Goings Law Firm, LLC is a law firm with experience in trucking related injuries or deaths. We are available at (803) 350-9230 or you may contact us online to answer your questions.
By: Robert F. Goings
What Causes Truck Accidents in South Carolina?
National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) data has confirmed that driver error is the leading cause of large truck accidents. Driver-related factors contributed to 31 percent of fatal truck accidents. In fact, the NTSB found that fatigue and overwork were responsible for up to 40 percent of all truck accidents. This is why Federal law regulates how much time a truck driver can spend on the road. These are referred to as hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. HOS regulations dictate how long a driver can stay behind the wheel without a break and how many hours they can drive within a given time span. Many trucker drivers choose to drive past the point of fatigue because they are under pressure from customers or shipping companies. Studies have shown that some trucker turn to illegal substances to stay awake during their long hours on the road. Trucking companies become liable when drivers violate the law or cause trucking accidents.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, several types of truck driver negligence or errors play a major role in causing serious tractor-trailer accidents. Some of the main factors in truck accidents include:
- Speeding or driving too fast for conditions, which was responsible for 7 percent of large truck accidents
- Distracted Driving, which played a role in 6 percent of fatal accidents involving large trucks.
- Improper Lane Shifting or Failure to stay in the proper lane, which was a factor in 6 percent of large truck crashes.
Other common causes or types of truck accidents that top the list include:
- Rollovers & Jack-knifing – Large truck are more likely to result in a roll-over accident due to the size, weight, and height of the vehicle. If the truck is carrying a load or pulling a trailer, the rollover can result from a jack-knifing.
- Blind-spots – Trucks typically have blind spots both at the back and on the sides. These are referred to as no-zones. If a driver fails to carefully monitor the blind spots, accidents can happen when the truck turns or changes lanes.
- Brake failure – Trucks always require more distance to stop. Unbalanced loads, poor maintenance, speeding, mechanical malfunctions, road conditions and weather can all prevent a truck’s being unable to stop on time. One study found that 46 percent of randomly inspected trucks had to be taken off the road until their brakes could be fixed.
- Under ride accidents – When a smaller vehicle collides with a large truck with a higher center of gravity, it may slide underneath the body or frame of the large truck. This commonly referred to as an “under ride accident. “Due to the nature of this collision, the driver or passengers in the small vehicle may suffer serious brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, or even death.
Have Questions for a Truck Accident Attorney in South Carolina?
If you have any questions about truck or eighteen wheeler accidents in South Carolina, it is best to contact a our Truck Accident Attorneys for a free consultation. The Goings Law Firm, LLC is available at (803) 350-9230 or you may contact us online to answer your questions.