Will more dangerous roads make America great again? asks Boca truck accident lawyer Joe Osborne. Doubtful is the answer.
President Trump has emphasized he wants to eliminate barriers, including many regulations, to businesses growing and hiring more workers. The repeal of what the trucking industry sees as needless, government overreach in the form of regulations may mean the difference between life and death on the roads. Boca truck accident lawyer Joe Osborne warns drivers more dangerous roads may be coming to Florida. If you are interested in more reading on this topic read Boca Truck Accident Lawyer Joe Osborne Says Large Trucks Cause Serious Injuries.
Regulations can cost businesses money and impede their productivity. But getting rid of regulations doesn’t eliminate costs; it just shifts or changes them.
- A trucking company may have lower operating costs but not if, as a result behavior or equipment changes due to the repeal of a regulation, an accident occurs.
- That could cause injuries, deaths and economic losses to the accident victims (potentially including the truck driver), higher insurance costs to the trucking company and lost productivity because a truck (and the driver too) are off the road for a period of time.
The trucking industry was very happy in December when Republican Congress members effectively blocked the Obama administration’s safety rules aimed at keeping tired truckers off the highway. Now that the White House has a new resident, more deregulation is expected to follow.
Congress suspended regulations issued by the prior administration mandating drivers take two nights off to rest if they take only the minimum break before starting a new workweek. Drivers for companies operating on a seven day schedule can work up to 80 hours in a workweek through a combination of driving and other responsibilities, like loading and unloading, according to the Los Angeles Times1.
Changing federal laws and regulations isn’t enough for the American Trucking Association. They plan on having a federal law limit the states’ ability to regulate the industry passed while Republicans control the White House and Congress.
This new law would prevent state laws from requiring additional rest breaks for truckers beyond what federal rules require. The association says one, less burdensome, uniform national rule on work hours for interstate truckers would be better and those extra breaks helping to keep drivers awake and alert really aren’t necessary for safety.
Normally Republicans see the federal government as too large and powerful and that more power should be given to state and local governments. Whether that will change in this instance, we don’t know yet.
Safety advocates fear this may just be the beginning of a broad rollback of transportation safety regulations since there’s no longer a traditionally consumer-friendly Democratic president to check the actions of traditionally business-friendly Republican lawmakers, says Osborne Boca Raton personal injury lawyer.
You may see on the roads longer, heavier, potentially more dangerous tractor-trailers if the industry gets its way. Shippers and the trucking industry will probably lobby for their long-sought goals of increasing the weight limit on trucks to more than 90,000 pounds (10,000 pounds more than current standards) and increasing the length of individual trailers in double-trailer combinations from 28 feet to 33 feet (resulting in tandem trailers being 63 feet long, ten feet longer than current standards).
Though heavier, longer trucks would be more difficult to maneuver, accelerate and stop, making them more dangerous the industry claims if they can put more cargo on each truck, the number of trucks will go down and with less trucks the chances of an accident should decrease. With bigger trucks come less costs and fewer trucks need fewer drivers which would help an industry short of tens of thousands of drivers.
If the trucking industry gets its way they look forward to lower costs and higher revenue and drivers on Florida roads can look forward to more dangerous commercial trucks on the road with them. If you or a loved one have suffered an injury caused by an accident involving a tractor trailer, contact Boca truck accident lawyer Joe Osborne at (561) 293-2600 or fill out this online contact form. You can discuss your case, how the law may apply and your best legal options to protect your rights and obtain compensation for your injuries.
- Los Angeles Times http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-truckers-safety-20161208-story.html