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What inspection requirements do motor carriers face?

When individuals fail to act carefully, it can cause serious harm and to Pottsville residents. For instance, last week this blog discussed how a truck accident may result when a truck driver fails to exercise the level of care he or she is required to exercise on the road. While truck drivers can be held responsible for their negligent driving, it is important to recognize that other types of careless behavior can also support a negligence claim.

Truck drivers and companies are held to different standards than others on the road. In fact, the federal government has enacted an entire set of regulations that apply solely to the trucking industry, known as federal trucking regulations.

Under these regulations, there are responsibilities put in place not only for driving standards, but also for the upkeep and maintenance of the truck itself. For example, commercial motor vehicles must be inspected as set forth in the regulations, which include the trailer and other components of the vehicle. Motor carriers cannot use a commercial motor vehicle that has not passed an inspection in accordance with the regulations. The law also imposes a responsibility on motor carriers to ensure that all parts and accessories are maintained and promptly repaired according to certain minimum standards.

Ultimately, a motor carrier who fails to abide by these regulations can be subject to certain penalties under the regulations. Moreover, individuals who are injured in accidents with the motor carrier may have a viable claim for the negligent truck maintenance, such as when the truck driver caused an accident because of some component or part that was not properly maintained or repaired. Accordingly, it is vital that individuals understand these regulations when they have been injured as a result of a truck accident, as it may provide an additional source to hold the motor carrier responsible for the crash.

Source: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, “Part 396: Inspection, repair, and maintenance,” accessed on March 12, 2016