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FMCSA continues effort to curb trucker fatigue

Motor vehicle accidents in Maryland that involve large commercial vehicles like tractor-trailers can often involve some of the most horrific injuries in large part due to the immense size and weight of these big rigs. There may be a variety of factors that contribute to a trucking accident. Some of these include vehicle parts malfunction, reckless or negligent operation, impairment by drugs or alcohol and trucker fatigue.

In 2017, there were 48 people killed in Maryland in crashes involving large trucks according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. While that is the lowest number of truck accident fatalities in the state in a few years, it still leaves 48 families mourning the loss of their loved ones unnecessarily.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration instituted new rules a few years ago dictating how many hours a truck driver could work or drive each day or week. One way the FMCSA aims to monitor this is through the use of electronic logging devices. These ELDs are now required for any driver who must submit Hours of Service records. An ELD tracks the amount of time a truck’s engine is running and can also distinguish for how much of that time the truck is idling and in motion.

An ELD is also able to capture data that shows the location of a truck at any given point. The total number of miles driven is also able to be identified via an electronic logging device. Any device found to be in violation must be repaired or replaced within eight days.