Many people suffer from a lack of sleep in their routines. Between work, children, finances, and other stresses, most people do not get the recommended amount of sleep on a nightly basis. While this may seem like a minor problem, the truth is that a lack of consistent rest can seriously impair a person’s physical and mental abilities. This includes a person’s ability to properly operate a motor vehicle.
Many truck drivers undertake jobs with strict deadlines that cover hundreds, if not thousands of miles. As a result, some of them drive for extended periods, resulting in impaired reactions and foggy mental states.
A Denver driver fatigue truck accident lawyer can represent the interests of people who have been injured due to overworked and worn-out truckers. Contact a tractor trailer accident attorney who can advocate for you.
Effects of Sleep Deprivation
The physical and mental effects of sleep deprivation can range from the obvious to the subtle. Some of the symptoms can take effect despite a person not realizing that they are about to occur. All of these symptoms can have a negative effect on a person’s ability to safely drive.
Sleepiness has been likened to intoxication for the impact that it can have on a person’s mental and physical state. Examples of these symptoms include:
- Cognitive Impairment
It is bad enough when a person driving a small car is impaired by these symptoms, but when people are driving large commercial trucks, the effects can be life-threatening. Collisions between commercial trucks and much smaller personal vehicles can result in serious injuries or even death for the riders in the smaller car.
Laws Concerning Truck Accidents
All collisions between cars and commercial trucks are the result of decisions made by the driver. While a truck driver who falls asleep at the wheel certainly did not intend to do so, they made choices that caused them to act negligently and will be held liable for the injuries they caused the victim.
There are four elements of a negligence case that a plaintiff must meet to have a successful negligence case. These are duty, breach, cause, and, damages. Duty is the legal concept that certain people have a responsibility to protect others. Duty is not automatic in everyday life, but certain actions that people take can create it. This duty is assumed to be present in truck accident cases since all drivers have a responsibility to act in a way that protects others from harm.
Breach is another element, and a breach of the duty of care occurs when a person takes an action or fails to act, in a way that places others in danger. The mere fact that a truck driver was sleep-deprived at the time of the accident may be sufficient to prove a breach. This is the element of negligence most often contested in truck accident cases.
There is also cause. When it comes to cause, the plaintiff must be able to prove that their injuries were caused by the defendant’s breach of the duty of care, and not pre-existing. Lastly, there are damages. A plaintiff must suffer a physical injury to claim damages. While mental pain and anguish can certainly be added on, a physical injury must be at the core of the case.
Statute of Limitations
One other aspect of trucker fatigue cases to remember is the statute of limitations. This is a time limit that a person has to file a case in court. Colorado Revised Statute 13-80-101 gives a plaintiff three years from the date of the accident to start a case in court.
Talk to a Denver Driver Fatigue Truck Accident Attorney Today
Collisions between commercial trucks and personal vehicles can result in catastrophic injury for the people in the smaller car. The injuries a person can sustain as a result of this kind of negligent behavior are endless.
With truck drivers routinely driving hundreds of miles without a break, they can often be sleep-deprived and inattentive. If this is the case, this simple fact may make them responsible for you or your loved one’s injuries.
Unfortunately, the trucking company’s insurance representative may not see it that way. Instead, the company might minimize the person’s injuries or even by placing the blame for the accident on the person’s shoulders.
A Denver driver fatigue truck accident attorney can work to gather all of the evidence in the case to present a detailed demand package from a position of strength. Take a positive first step to get the fair compensation that you deserve, contact a lawyer today.