A person handling a vehicle while compromised by medical conditions can be unsafe, endangering his or her safety as well as others on the road.
This is particularly true when the driver in question sits behind the wheel of a semi, 18-wheeler, tractor-trailer, big rig, or other large commercial truck. Due to the massive size and weight of these vehicles—some reach up to 80,000 pounds when loaded with cargo—there's great potential for catastrophic accidents if a truck operator loses control.
Dangerous Health Conditions Can Cause Accidents
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) strictly regulates the trucking industry. One part of the agency's mission is to ensure commercial truck drivers are medically fit for the road. They're required to undergo a physical at least once every two years, and self-report 25 dangerous health conditions, including:
- Sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea or narcolepsy. Sleep apnea is especially prevalent among truck drivers. FMCSA research indicates nearly 30 percent of truckers have this condition, which can prevent a good night's sleep and cause them to be overly fatigued during the day.
- Head or brain injuries, such as concussions or moderate-to-severe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), which frequently result in long-term physical, cognitive, behavioral, and other impairments.
- Seizure disorders, like epilepsy, that could cause an affected trucker to lose control of a rig.
- Other conditions, such as diabetes, hearing or vision problems, heart issues, high cholesterol or blood pressure, lung or kidney conditions, chronic dizziness, and mental health issues.
Consult a Skilled Georgia Attorney About Your Truck Accident Case
If you were hurt in a Georgia truck accident that wasn't your fault, you might be entitled to compensation for a wide range of economic and non-economic damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you may be eligible to collect compensation from both the commercial driver and the trucking company that employs him or her.
Contact Van Sant Law today to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss the details of your case with a member of our legal team.