Maryland Truck Driver Fatigue Accident Lawyer

Commercial trucks traveling on Maryland’s roads transport goods to and from 93 percent of the state’s communities, according to the Maryland Motor Truck Association. But there is danger in that.

Truck drivers, with long hours behind the wheel, are causing accidents because they are fatigued. Marylanders on the road who have been hit by a commercial truck in the state should promptly contact a Maryland truck driver fatigue accident lawyer who has handled many of these cases. A skilled injury attorney can strive for a positive outcome for you.

Driver Fatigue and Accidents

Truck drivers work long hours behind the wheel, many of those hours at night, causing mental and physical exertion. Coupled with inadequate sleep, that is as debilitating as driving while intoxicated because drivers drift into sleep.

Driver fatigue accounts for 13 percent of all commercial truck accidents, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Federal Regulations

Federal “hours of service” regulations allow the driver of commercial trucks to drive up to 11 hours a day and as many as 77 hours over a week, but surveys show that many of these drivers work longer than the law permits, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The federal rule revised in 2013 reduced a trucker’s work week hours from 82 to 70 with no more than 11 straight hours without a 10-hour rest between shifts.

Maryland Negligence Law

Negligence is failing to act in a manner that causes harm to someone else. Commercial truck accidents because of driver fatigue fall under personal injury law and Maryland’s contributory negligence doctrine.

This doctrine does not allow any party who bears any fault in an accident to claim damages, no matter how negligent the other party was in causing the crash. The reasoning is that anyone who themselves is negligent should not be allowed to claim damages. A Maryland truck driver fatigue accident lawyer can further explain the law and strict legal process involved in establishing negligence.

Proving Negligence

Negligence is comprised of five elements. Each of them must be proven to win a fatigued driver case.

  • Duty of care: The law obligates the truck driver to behave with caution and watchfulness toward another person and the public to avoid causing harm or property damage
  • Breach: Behavior that violates duty of care, and an omission can be a breach, such as a truck driver operating the vehicle without proper rest
  • Causation: The truck driver’s fatigue caused the accident
  • Proximate cause: A specific and foreseeable accident occurred
  • Damages: Actual financial loss happened to the person bringing the case


The law allows economic and noneconomic damages including:

  • Medical care and therapeutic treatment expenses
  • Loss of present and future income
  • Disability
  • Disfigurement
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of consortium
  • Punitive, if the act was egregious

A Maryland truck driver fatigue accident lawyer can review the facts of the accident and evaluate if there is sufficient legal cause to sue for damages.

Working With a Maryland Truck Driver Fatigue Accident Attorney

The difficult part of truck driver fatigue cases is to prove the truck driver was indeed fatigued, as a scientific test showing fatigue does not exist.

It is best to retain a Maryland truck driver fatigue accident lawyer promptly so that memories are fresh when the lawyer questions participants in the accident, the subpoena is written, and the electronic logs of the trucking company are referenced.