Can a co-driver be liable for a truck accident?

Co-drivers can bear liability for a truck accident in Clarksburg in certain cases. Although fault most often applies to the driver, there are circumstances in which both have acted negligently and contributed to the truck accident.

Examples Where Co-Driver Liability Might Apply

One example where a co-driver might be liable for a truck accident is when the co-driver’s distractions interfere with the safe operation of the truck. If the co-driver is horsing around in the cab, distracting the driver or even directly causing an accident – like bumping the steering wheel – then the co-driver could be liable.

If the driver was falling asleep at the wheel and the co-driver knew, both could be liable for an accident. The driver shouldn't have been driving drowsy and the co-driver shouldn't have ignored the dangerous situation that led to the accident.

Federal regulations allow a limited amount of time for an individual to drive. Going over those hours is a violation. But if the co-driver is aware of this and doesn't take over the wheel, he or she might bear some liability for allowing the driver to dangerously violate the hours of service rules.

Drivers have a huge responsibility when it comes to operating a truck. But co-drivers must be ready to take over when the circumstances warrant. Also, if co-drivers have knowledge of a threatening situation, they must take the necessary steps to avoid an accident.

How an Attorney May Help Establish a Co-driver’s Liability for a Truck Accident

Pursuing a claim against a truck driver comes with its own challenges. So adding to the mix a co-driver who is liable for the accident, along with federal regulations and other complex issues, it's important to seek legal advice. An attorney can help collect the evidence necessary that shows both drivers’ fault. Call the Miley Legal Group in Clarksburg at 304-931-4088 or use our online contact form to set up a consultation.

Tim Miley
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Injury Lawyer, Author, & Owner of The Miley Legal Group