What Is a Truck Driver’s Travel Log?

What Is a Truck Driver’s Travel Log?How do you keep track of your tasks or work assignments? You may keep a notebook, use a cell phone app, or add tasks to a calendar. Your employer may have software that allows you to track and manage projects and assignments. These are all examples of tools that help you manage your work and home life.

Truck drivers also need a way to keep track of their hours on the road, sleeping berths, and other vital information that helps them stay on track and remain compliant with federal regulations. A truck driver’s travel log is the tool most companies use to help accomplish the task.

What information does a truck driver’s log contain, and why could it matter to you? At the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd., we want to help you understand the purpose of a truck driver’s travel log and how the information it contains could be vital to you if you are ever involved in a collision with a truck that wasn’t your fault.

What Is a Truck Driver’s Travel Log?

Truck drivers need a way to log things like their hours behind the wheel and the miles they’ve traveled. In the past, paper logbooks were used for this type of information. Today, technology has caught up with the trucking industry, and most commercial trucks are now outfitted with Electronic Logging Devices. An ELD is an electronic device that is integrated with a vehicle’s engine. It automatically records information and captures data about the truck’s movement and miles driven.

Why Do Drivers Need a Travel Log?

What Is a Truck Driver’s Travel Log - Why it is neededFor safety purposes, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration limits the amount of time that a truck driver can spend on the road working. These requirements are known as hours-of-service regulations. For example, truck drivers cannot operate a truck for more than 11 hours after ten consecutive hours off duty. These regulations are meant to help curb dangerous driving practices like drowsy or fatigued driving.

An electronic logging device captures data that logs the amount of time a driver is behind the wheel, therefore helping them and their company stick to the federal government’s hours-of-service regulations.

What Information Does a Travel Log Record?

While one of the most crucial functions of the travel log is to record the amount of time a driver spends operating their vehicle, these electronic devices also record other vital information. Most travel logs will also record information such as:

  • Time and location
  • Sleeping berth hours
  • Number of miles traveled
  • Number of hours the truck has been in operation
  • Log of off-duty hours
  • Driver identification information
  • Vehicle and motor carrier information

Truck drivers may also opt to keep a paper copy of this information.

How Can a Truck Driver’s Travel Log Impact You?

Consider this. You are involved in an accident with a negligent truck driver. You are seriously injured and need compensation for your medical expenses. The trucking company’s insurance provider is playing hardball. You swear the driver looked like they were falling asleep at the wheel just before the collision, but how can you prove it and get the money you deserve? The information from the ELD could reveal whether the driver observed the hours-of-service regulations.

The data contained in the truck driver’s travel log can be vital in accident claims. It can help you determine whether a driver was in breach of federal regulations at the time of the crash and potentially negligent or at fault for the accident. However, getting your hands on this crucial information can be challenging. The trucking company technically owes the data contained on the travel log. In general, trucking companies are not willing to voluntarily hand over information to accident victims. The information may show that they are liable for an accident.

Getting your hands on a truck driver’s travel log typically takes legal intervention. In many cases, an attorney can draft what is known as a spoliation letter. This document notifies the trucking company that they are required to preserve all information pertaining to a truck accident, including the travel log and black box data from the truck. Time is of the essence. This letter needs to be submitted to the company before they have time to lose or destroy vital information that could strengthen your accident claim.

Get in Touch with an Experienced Truck Accident Attorney Today

If you are involved in a significant truck accident, you need the resources an experienced truck accident attorney can bring to your case. At the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd., we strive to help you recover the compensation you deserve after a collision with a negligent truck driver.

Contact our office today by calling (401) 751-8855 to set up your free, no-obligation consultation with a skilled Providence truck accident attorney.


How Does Fatigue Affect Truck Accidents?

How Does Fatigue Affect Truck Accidents?It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone to discover that fatigue and sleeplessness contribute to a high percentage of truck and semi accidents on the roads of Rhode Island and other states. Up to 40 percent of all accidents involving commercial vehicles are related in some part to driver fatigue. And for this reason, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) set out guidelines on the number of hours a truck driver could spend on the road in 2018.

Despite regulations requiring drivers to take regular rest breaks and limiting the hours on the road, tired drivers are still causing accidents every day. If you are involved in such an accident, you need to consider contacting an attorney to protect your rights.

What Is Fatigue?

Fatigue is a catchall term for the condition of your body and mind after a long period without rest or sleep. Everyone has been in a fatigued state after too much time at work or on the road. You may feel sleepy or foggy, or like you are moving too slowly. The difference is that you are not driving an 80,000-pound truck down the highway at 60 miles per hour.

Fatigue is the result of inadequate rest breaks, insufficient mealtime, and lack of restful sleep. These things are all especially problematic for long-haul truckers who want to “drive through” or are encouraged to do so by their company or their schedule. Ten hours in the cab of a truck, with only quick breaks for some truck-stop nachos and a soda, followed by a catnap in the back of a sleeper cab, can only lead to a fatigued driver on the following day.

What Does Fatigue Do to the Driver?

How Does Fatigue Affect Truck Accidents - What does it cause?After a day or two of this schedule, drivers may feel okay but will have increasing difficulty with their daily routine.

  • Fatigue slows reaction time. The braking and turning time of a big rig is seconds slower than that of even a large car or SUV. Truck drivers are continually being cut off by cars that cannot appreciate the mass and speed of the truck, so they need fast reflexes for swerving and braking. Fatigue means a slower foot on the brake and a slower realization of the need to turn or swerve.
  • Fatigue means poor decision-making. A fatigued driver may feel okay, especially in the morning after a cup of coffee. But their mind may be as slow as their feet. They may think they can drive a little faster to get to a destination or take a chance on running a few signals if nobody is around.
  • Fatigue leads to tunnel vision. Eventually, fatigue increases to the point the driver must use all their energy just to focus on keeping their truck aimed straight down the road in front of them. They may become unaware of vehicles to their left and right, especially as cars move in and out of their blind spots. Tunnel vision, sometimes called highway hypnosis, can be deadly on long drives across boring terrain.
  • Fatigue leads to falling asleep. The end result of fatigue is sleepiness. The body can only take so much poor food, poor rest, and visual monotony. A driver who fails to get sufficient breaks will find their eyes drifting shut no matter how much coffee or energy drinks they swallow down.

What We Can Do

Under federal law, drivers are required to keep meticulous logs of their hours on and off the road and how much time they spend sleeping in their trucks and in motels. These truck logs create a record of the driver’s rest time.

In cases of accident, it is possible to assess whether the driver was fatigued or not and how much that fatigue may have had to do with the accident. However, truck drivers and their companies are not anxious to hand over the logs to accident victims. Drivers are only required to keep the logs for six months, and after that they may be erased or destroyed.

If you’ve been involved in an accident with a big rig or any kind of commercial truck or other vehicle, you should contact an attorney right away. You have a limited amount of time to get a notice to the company to prevent the loss of their logbooks.

Contact the Providence truck accident lawyers of Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd. as soon as possible at (401) 751-8855 with any questions or concerns about your truck accident. Our team can help you acquire the logbook, interview drivers and witnesses, and determine what impact driver fatigue may have played in your accident so we can pursue compensation for you.


Why Is the Black Box Important in Truck Accidents?

According to the National Safety Council, large trucks are involved in ten percent of all vehicular accidents. In 2019, there were 5,005 trucks involved in fatal crashes. This represents a 43 percent rise since 2010. There were also 118,000 large trucks involved in crashes that led to injuries, the majority of which happened on non-interstate roads during daylight hours.

The months with the greatest number of accidents were July, September, and October. Because of the weight and size differences, an accident between a truck and a smaller passenger vehicle often leads to greater personal property damage and possibly catastrophic injury. You should not be responsible for medical expenses and lost wages if the accident were entirely someone else’s fault.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident through no fault of your own, contact the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd. today. Commercial truck operators have a responsibility to drive safely and maintain their vehicles. Our dedicated and experienced attorneys work tenaciously to seek fair compensation for your injuries. Call us today at (401) 751-8855 to set up your free consultation.

What Does the Black Box Do?

commercial truck black boxEvery large commercial truck manufactured after 1990 has an electronic control module or event data recorder, commonly called the black box. This is a computer system that records data from the truck that can help law enforcement and accident investigators determine what was happening before, during, and after an event. These are like the black boxes found in airplanes.

There are different types of black boxes. Some record continuously while the vehicle engine is on. Others record information only for a few minutes before and during a crash. The data that is recorded can also vary depending on the device. However, the black box is linked to the onboard engine computer system. This means most devices should at least capture the speed, travel time, and whether the brakes were applied. Other information that may be available include:

  • Whether there was a sudden acceleration or deceleration
  • Whether cruise control was engaged
  • The daily or monthly activity
  • How frequently the speed was above a predetermined limit
  • Whether the driver was wearing a seatbelt
  • Whether the airbag was deployed
  • The number of hard stops
  • Tire pressure
  • The number of times the truck was in a crash
  • GPS location
  • Usage data
  • Trip time and distances
  • Last rest period

Why Is the Black Box Important After an Accident?

Most trucking companies will not voluntarily provide you with the information from the black box. However, the data can be key to helping to determine the cause of the crash. A combination of the black box data, physical evidence, and eyewitness testimony can demonstrate where responsibility lies for the accident. This may result in the company being held responsible for compensation and expenses related to the accident.

commercial truck accidentIf you or a loved one was involved in a truck accident, it’s vital to get this information as soon as possible. Many of the newer data boxes record and keep data for approximately 30 days. However, older models may only store data for a few days. Some trucking companies may try to have the truck repaired as soon as possible, thus erasing the physical evidence. This allows them to put the truck back on the road and possibly run the time out on the black box, so the data is written over. Others may try to destroy the black box data to protect themselves.

An experienced truck accident attorney can help recover the data from the truck’s black box and have it analyzed to determine the conditions during the accident. Accident investigators and accident reconstruction experts can help with this complicated process and may help strengthen your case. If it’s necessary, your attorney may pursue legal action to get the data from the black box before it’s automatically wiped.

It’s impossible to tell what type of black box has been installed in the truck that hit you. Therefore it’s important to act quickly and contact an experienced truck accident attorney. They can notify the trucking company that the data should be preserved and sent to them. Your attorney may use an expert to download the data and any other electronic recordings. This helps to avoid intentional or inadvertent problems that can destroy vital evidence.

Contact the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd. for Help After a Truck Accident

After a truck accident, you may be left dazed and confused by a complicated process to recover damages. At the same time, you have medical expenses, property damage, and a mountain of bills that keep growing. If you’re unable to work, this just adds to your stress.

Taking legal action on your own can be difficult or even impossible. The trucking company will have legal representation to protect their rights and fight their case. An experienced truck accident attorney can handle your legal battle so you can focus your energy on recovering from your injuries.

The trucking company may send an insurance adjuster to ask you questions or offer an early settlement. It is important that you not speak with an insurance adjuster without your attorney present. Adjusters are skilled negotiators, and their focus is on reducing the financial liability of their company. Your attorney can help prevent you from saying something inadvertently that may negatively affect your case.

At the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd., our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to represent you and help protect your rights. Our attorneys have won millions of dollars for our clients who were involved in truck accidents. Call us today at (401) 751-8855 to schedule your free consultation.

Truck Driver’s Hours of Service Regulations

Truck driving can be an exhausting profession. It requires drivers to be on the road for long hours and at strange times. The number of hours a trucker can drive is regulated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, but many drivers figure out ways to falsify information and blow past these regulations. They have a number of incentives for doing so. Truck drivers are employed by large trucking companies that pressure them to meet deadlines, even if it means driving while exhausted. Additionally, most drivers are paid by the hour, encouraging them to work longer and earn more money. When truck drivers operate longer than they are supposed to and do not get enough sleep, they become dangerous to themselves and everyone else driving around them. Fatigued drivers are not good drivers and the chances of an accident occurring increases greatly.

Accidents involving large commercial vehicles are often devastatingly disastrous. The large size and power of the vehicles enable them to be very destructive against passenger vehicles. The result of a trucking accident could leave victims in physical pain, emotional distress, and with expensive medical bills. If you were injured in a trucking accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation. The attorneys of the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd. understand how overwhelming it can be to recover from a serious accident. Compensation may not be able to fix your injuries, but it can take away the financial burden so that you and your family can focus on healing.

Hours of Service Regulations

As previously stated, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration outlines the regulations that truck drivers must follow. These regulations are as follows:

  • Drivers may not drive over a maximum of 11 hours after a consecutive ten hours off-duty
  • Drivers may not drive beyond 14 consecutive hours after coming on duty. Off-duty time does not extend the 14 hours
  • Drivers may drive only if eight hours or less has passed since the end of a driver’s last off-duty or sleep period of at least 30 minutes.
  • Drivers may not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days.
  • Drivers must take at least eight consecutive hours to sleep, plus an additional two consecutive hours off-duty

Hours of Service Regulations exist to keep truck drivers and those around them safe while on the road. When these regulations are not followed, drivers are neglecting their responsibility and the lives of those around them.

Contact Us

If you or someone you love has been injured by a negligent and fatigued truck driver, contact one of the qualified attorneys at the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd. We have the experience and knowledge needed to represent you at every stage of the legal process and get you the compensation you need. To discuss the details of your case, contact our office at (401) 751-8855 today.

Driver of bus did not brake in fatal tractor-trailer collision

According to Bristol Herald Courier, a bus and tractor-trailer collision occurred last Sunday, October 23 around 5:15 a.m. The accident happened along Interstate 10 near Palm Springs, California, killed 13 individuals and injured 31 others.

California Highway Patrol Border Division Chief Jim Abele said the bus driver did not brake at all. Abele said, “There’s no indication whatsoever that the driver applied the brakes.” He added, “They just keep pulling bodies stuck in between the seats. It’s just due to this bus going so fast into the back of the truck. Why he did that, that’s what we’re trying to find out.”

USA Holiday had license to travel between states, which required bus driver Teodulo Elias Vides to drive within federal limits on regulated work hours. Under the circumstances police authorities described, Vides was within those limits. He departed Los Angeles at 8 p.m. and came back less than 12 hours later, which put the ceiling of the driving time at a 10 to 15-hour span.

Providence Truck Accident Attorney Discusses the Surge in Truck Accidents Nationwide

Providence Truck Accident Attorney Discusses the Surge in Truck Accidents Nationwide
Providence Truck Accident Attorney Discusses the Surge in Truck Accidents Nationwide

The most deadly and costly occurring accidents are those involving trucks. One out of every eight automotive accident fatalities involve large trucks such as big rigs, tractor trailers and other commercial vehicles. When a commercial truck is involved in an accident, eighty-six percent of fatalities and seventy-seven percent of those injured are the drivers and passengers of the smaller vehicles involved in the crash.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, truck accidents occur an average of eleven times a day in the United States. These accidents result in over 100,000 injuries and 4,000 deaths each year.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that there has been an increase in fatalities involving large trucks – trucks such as 18-wheelers and semis. Accidents involving large trucks result in multiple-vehicle accidents, causing more deaths and injuries to a larger group of people.

Truck accidents occur for a wide variety of reasons, the most common causes are driver error, mechanical failures, and conditions such as poor weather, traffic signal failure and road issues.

Although there are laws regarding the number of hours a truck driver can spend on the road each day, these laws are rarely followed. Drivers are not getting sufficient sleep due to tight deadlines, in fact, most trucking accidents are caused by driver fatigue and sleep deprivation. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released a study that found that eight-eight percent of trucking accidents were due to driver error.

The second most common cause of truck accidents is related to truck maintenance issues. Most truck accidents caused by mechanical issues are due to improper maintenance. The most common problem with commercial trucks are unsafe brakes.

Because a truck is much bigger and heavier than a car, when a car and a truck are involved in an accident, the car suffers most of the damage and the driver is more likely to suffer serious injury or death.

Speeding poses another danger. Speeding along with being unfamiliar with the road causes many truck accidents. The truck driver may be unable to reduce his speed if traffic suddenly slows or if an obstacle appears in the road. The size of the truck along with the momentum results in the truck being unable to slow down enough to avoid causing an accident.

Rear end collisions caused by tailgating. Many truck drivers are on a tight deadline and will “ride the bumper” of the car in front of them. This type of aggressive, intimidating driving endangers everyone on the road and greatly increases the chance of a rear end collision, and unlike a rear end collision with another automobile, most rear end collisions with trucks result in a fatality.

There are also some issues related to the size of the truck itself. Trucks have blind spots just like cars do. However, the blind spots on trucks are much larger and not include the sides but also directly in the rear. Trucks also require larger braking zones to avoid accidents.

Truck accidents can be devastating and can cause critical injuries to accident victims such as burns, neck and back injuries, broken bones, bone fractures, internal injuries, brain injuries and the worst possible injury – death.

Victims of truck accidents can incur major financial expenses related to medical bills, vehicle repairs, and time off work. The families of people killed in truck accidents incur additional expenses related to lost time at work and funeral expenses.

If you or a family member have been involved in a truck accident it is crucial that you hire an experienced lawyer. Many trucking companies and insurance providers will try to avoid taking responsibility for the accident. They may also encourage you to accept less of a settlement than you’re entitled. to.

When you’re trying to recover from the injuries sustained in a truck accident or deal with the loss of a loved one, it can be difficult to figure out what to do. You’ll require the services of an experienced Providence Truck Accident Attorney.

Hiring the Right Rhode Island Personal Injury Attorney for Your Providence Truck Accident Attorney Injury Case

When choosing a Rhode Island Attorney to represent you, it is important that you choose someone with specific experience in truck accident case. There are two reasons why this is especially important:

  • Your lawyer must be thoroughly familiar with federal and state trucking regulations.
  • Your lawyer must understand the long-term ramifications of catastrophic injuries and the costs and damages involved.

For the expertise that comes with four decades of focused experience in truck accidents and serious personal injury cases in Rhode Island, choose the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd..
Call today for a free consultation. You’ll have no out-of pocket expenses, and you’ll only pay legal fees if we win money for you and your family.

Don’t wait. Let us begin our investigation now, while evidence is still fresh and before statutory time limits expire. Call the Law Offices of Ronald J. Resmini, Accident & Injury Lawyers, Ltd. today at 401.751.8855 to speak with an experienced Providence Truck Accident Attorney.

Written By: Ronald J. Resmini

Last Updated : Tuesday, September 1, 2020