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After Fatal Truck Accident, Lawmakers Seek Stronger Fatigue Rules

On Behalf of | Jun 16, 2014 | Truck Accident

The New Jersey truck accident lawyers at Breslin and Breslin are in full support of advocates seeking stronger New Jersey trucking fatigue rules.

New Jersey lawmakers this week are asking the U.S. Department of Transportation to review truck weight limits in the wake of the crash that critically injured comedian Tracy Morgan and killed a companion after a Wal-Mark truck struck and flipped the limo van they were riding in on the New Jersey Turnpike. Police say the Georgia truck driver, who has been charged with vehicular homicide and four counts of assault by auto, had not slept for 24 hours.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Wal-Mart drivers have been involved in nine fatal accidents in the past two years, but the company – which reported 667 million vehicle-miles traveled last year – has a “satisfactory” safety rating.

The issue of driver fatigue comes as the U.S. Senate considers rolling back a 70-hour cap on a trucker’s work week that went into effect last July, limiting driving to 11 hours a day.

In 2003, New Jersey became the first state to make it a crime of vehicular homicide for causing a fatal accident while driving drowsy.

The statute, known as Maggie’s Law, made it illegal for a driver who had been awake longer than 24 hours to operate a vehicle.

The law was named for 20-year-old Maggie McDonnell, who was killed in 1997 when a driver awake longer than 24 hours crossed three lanes of traffic and hit her car head-on.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a truck accident in New Jersey, the experienced attorneys at Breslin and Breslin will conduct an investigation to determine whether driver negligence played a role in your accident. New Jersey truck accident victims may be entitled to compensation for present and future medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering and other costs related to the accident. For a free case evaluation, contact the Breslin and Breslin truck accident attorneys today.

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