Do truck and bus drivers have more responsibilities than drivers of cars?
Yes. Truck and bus drivers are required to live up to the same standards and laws as every other driver on the road., but there are special safety laws that also cover most commercial drivers.
First, to prevent drivers from driving so long that they become dangerously tired, the law sets maximum hours they are allowed to work before taking a break. Truck drivers cannot drive more than eleven hours in one shift without stopping to take a break. Also, no matter how much time they spend behind the wheel, a truck driver has to stop and take a break within fourteen hours of the time the driver first clocks in to work for a shift. A break has to be ten hours in a row completely off duty. It does not matter if a truck driver works for two or three different companies; to comply with the law, the truck river must take a ten hour break from any and all jobs.
Bus drivers cannot drive more than ten hours in one shift before taking a break. However, bus drivers are only required to be off duty for eight hours between shifts (instead of the ten hours for truck drivers), and can stay on duty for up to fifteen hours from the time they clock in for a shift.
There are also limits on the amount of time a commercial vehicle driver can be on duty in a week, depending on what type of company the driver works for.
In order for police to check whether a driver is complying with the law, truck drivers and bus drivers are required to keep log books detailing, for every fifteen minutes, whether the driver is driving, at work but not behind the wheel, completely off duty, or sleeping in a bed in the back of the vehicle’s cab.
Truck drivers and bus drivers are required to check their vehicles and cargo before and after driving to make sure there are no safety issues, and to keep records of each time they checked and the vehicle’s mileage at the time.
Both truck drivers and bus drivers are legally required to pull over and stop driving if the weather or road conditions become too dangerous.
If a truck or bus driver is involved in an accident and either the driver gets a ticket or someone dies as a result of the accident, the driver is required to promptly take a drug and alcohol test.
These are just a few of the numerous rules that apply to those that drive commercial vehicles in interstate commerce. It is important to hire a lawyer that has substantial experience in this field to assist you in these cases.