Our Texas truck accident lawyers emphasize the importance of safe tractor-trailers
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently ordered a Houston trucking company to cease operations due to numerous safety violations and a fatal truck accident earlier this year, according to Fleet Owner, a trucking industry website.
The FMCSA ordered 4 Life Transport in Houston to stop operating its fleet of commercial trucks on Feb. 16, 2022. The order to cease operations came in response to safety violations and a fatal truck accident on Feb. 7, 2022, in which one of the company’s truck drivers was killed in the crash.
A history of safety violations
The truck driver killed in the crash and the truck he was operating for 4 Life Transport were both previously affiliated with Adversity Transport, another Houston-based trucking company. On Jan. 25, 2022, the FMCSA ordered the same truck driver and the same truck out of service due to an “imminent hazard” posed by the driver and the truck.
In response to the truck accident on Feb. 7, the FMCSA conducted an in-depth review of 4 Life Transport and its connection to Adversity Transport. The FMCSA investigation revealed 4 Life Transport to be "egregiously non-compliant" with multiple federal safety regulations,” Fleet Owner reported.
In particular, the Houston-based trucking company had received numerous violations involving truck drivers who tested positive for controlled substances and alcohol use, failure to comply with commercial driver’s license (CDL) standards and qualifications, driver Hours of Service (HOS) violations, as well as safety violations involving vehicle maintenance and repairs.
Fleet Owner magazine also described 4 Life Transport as a “chameleon” truck carrier due to the company’s connection with Adversity Transport. According to Fleet Owner, many trucking companies with numerous violations often reincarnate themselves by changing the company’s name and acquiring new U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) numbers in an attempt to avoid attention from federal authorities.
Common commercial vehicle safety violations
Safety violations remain a serious problem for many trucking companies and truck drivers. The FMCSA keeps a detailed list of the most common truck inspection violations for each year. Last year, the four most common commercial truck inspection violations were:
- Inoperative required lamp (truck lights not working) – 347,783 violations or 11.85 percent of all FMCSA truck inspection violations for 2021.
- Operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) without proof of inspection – 161,051 violations or 5.49 percent of all violations.
- Clamp brake or roto brake out-of-adjustment – 127,962 violations or 4.36 percent of violations.
- Not having a fire extinguisher in the truck or the fire extinguisher not secured properly or previously discharged – 114,788 violations or 3.91 percent of violations.
Common semi-truck violations in Texas
So what are the most common truck inspection safety violations in Texas? Some of the violations are similar to the ones for the rest of the country. But others are unique to Texas. Last year, the four most common FMCSA commercial truck inspection violations in Texas involved:
- Truck lights not working – 102,731 violations or 11.37 percent of violations in Texas.
- Clamp brake or roto brake out-of-adjustment – 35,592 violations or 4.87 percent of violations.
- Safety violations involving inspection, repair, or maintenance of the truck – 35,544 violations or 4.46 percent of violations statewide.
- Oil or gas leak involving the truck – 33,480 violations or 4.45 percent of violations in Texas.
How a truck accident lawyer can help you
Due to their massive size, large commercial vehicles often cause others to suffer severe injuries in the event of a crash. Common truck accident injuries include:
- Concussion and other types of traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Facial injuries that may require reconstructive surgery
- Permanent or partial paralysis from a spinal cord injury (SCI)
- Severed limbs
- Fractured and broken bones
- Internal injuries
- Permanent scarring/disfigurement
These types of injuries have the potential to change your life forever, but to the trucking company, your pain and losses are nothing more than a threat to their profits. That's why it's common for cases involving trucking companies to be highly complex and contested—and that's why you need an experienced truck accident attorney on your side to level the playing field and fight for the compensation you're entitled to.
At Tracey Fox King & Walters in Texas, our dedicated legal team has decades of experience successfully handling complicated truck accident lawsuits. We've recovered more than $400 million and counting for our clients, including a $1,250,000 settlement for a case involving a student who was killed in a truck accident.
Learn more about how we can help you. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Texas truck accident lawyer. We have offices conveniently located in Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio.