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Number of federal exemptions keeps climbing

The U.S. Tax Code is legendary in it is complexity. What used to be less than 200 pages before World War II has become an 1100 page behemoth that is so complex that many people (especially lay people) cannot decipher it. The same is arguably happening to federal regulations regarding trucking safety.

A recent report highlighted the complaint from the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance that federal regulations are becoming complex and excessive that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration cannot keep up with corresponding inspections. Even more troubling is the number of exemptions that are being granted to drivers and motor carrier companies. This has placed a considerable burden on safety inspectors. 

With the allowance of so many exemptions, the safety goals that the latest legislation were supposed to achieve are likely in jeopardy.  This is because roadside inspections would be ineffective, if not moot, since there would arguably be no enforcement actions taken for violations.

This could play a large role in the future of truck accident litigation, since a violation of a particular federal regulation could be viewed as a failure to use reasonable care that could serve as the legal basis for a personal injury claim. If too many exemptions are granted to mask otherwise genuine violations, it may be more difficult for accident victims to recover from an offending trucking company.

It remains to be seen whether the number of exemptions will be curtailed.

In the meantime, if you have been injured in a trucking accident, an experienced personal injury attorney can advise you. 

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