Tom Mustin, Ask The Lawyers: What role do truck drivers have in truck crash cases and more generally, the safety of our roads and highways?
Nick Gurney, Gurney Law: A lot of folks, Tom, think that the work that we do is anti-trucker. And we’re not anti-trucker. We support the trucking industry. It’s a vital part of our nation’s infrastructure.
Truck drivers play a role in truck crashes in the sense that they’re behind the wheel. They’re the captain of the ship, and they’re responsible for doing things like pre- and post-trip inspections and following the rules of the road, hours of service – the number of hours they’re allowed to drive – but it doesn’t end there.
Truck drivers are put in very difficult positions. They’re the most surveilled employees in our country. They’re watched all the time. They drive long hours for less money than they should be paid, frankly. And often they’re paid on a per-mile scheme, which is… many folks think inherently dangerous scheme, where it incentivizes trucks going faster, cutting corners, and taking dangerous routes. So we really, we sympathize with the truck drivers; in many situations, they’re just put in really tough spots when all they’re trying to do is put food on the table. It’s really a difficult job.