Who Oversees Trucking Operations in North Carolina?

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A tractor trailer drives down a North Carolina interstate.

According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, almost 15,000 crashes in North Carolina included large commercial trucks in 2019. Because of these accidents, thousands of people were severely injured or killed, and almost all of them could have been avoided. Adhering to federal and state commercial trucking laws is one of the most effective methods commercial truck drivers can use to prevent accidents and keep the roadways safer for other drivers.

If you or a loved one have been injured or killed due to the negligence of a truck driver in North Carolina, contact the experienced truck accident attorneys at Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters,’ to receive your free, no-obligation legal consultation and see what we can do to help you today. You should never be forced to pay for the negligence of another driver. Here at Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters,’ we fight for the rights of truck accident injury victims and their families to seek just compensation for all of their accident-related injuries. Call (800) 529-0804 or contact us online to schedule your case evaluation with an experienced commercial truck lawyer today.

North Carolina Truck Operations

The International Registration Plan is an accord that governs both the international and interstate transit of products and people throughout the United States and Canada, including North Carolina truck operations. The International Registration Plan requires owners of commercial trucks who meet the following criteria to register their vehicles:

  • Vehicles with two axles and a GVWR greater than 26,000 pounds.
  • Any combination of trailers or tractors with a combined weight rating greater than 26,000 pounds.
  • Vehicles with more than two axles.

Owners of commercial trucks in North Carolina who have registered with the International Registration Plan are subject to a number of unique rules, including:

  • Keeping records of their fleet’s operations
  • Obtaining a current interstate USDOT or MC number from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
  • Securing and holding minimum commercial liability insurances
  • Upon hiring commercial operators as employees, providing an employer identification number from the IRS.

How Long Can a Truck Driver Drive Each Day?

Commercial drivers often have a lot of pressure on the road because they frequently drive for other organizations. Heavy trucks also pose a serious risk to other drivers if they are not driven correctly due to their weight and size. This brings up laws governing hours of service. By restricting how long commercial truckers can drive without taking a break, these laws make North Carolina’s roads and those across the country safer. By setting limits like these, hours of service rules attempt to keep drivers from becoming too tired and lower the number of accidents.

Trucking Operations in North Carolina

The FMCSA is in charge of regulating the commercial trucking sector nationwide. North Carolina has accepted FMCSA requirements and has several more government bodies to watch over commercial carriers and improve road safety for the public. The NCDOT is in charge of overseeing and enforcing all trucking operations in North Carolina. The Department of Public Safety also does audits of commercial trucking companies to make sure they follow the rules. They also look into trucking accidents to make programs to help prevent them. The North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles is also vested with the power to regulate business licensing and set requirements for commercial liability insurance. Finally, the state’s police are equipped with the necessary training to enforce the regulations governing commercial trucks on public roads.

What Are the License Requirements in North Carolina for Commercial Truckers?

In North Carolina, a commercial driver’s license is necessary for anyone operating a vehicle that is intended to move people or property. However, the CDL rule doesn’t apply to people who drive farm equipment, emergency vehicles, or military vehicles.

According to federal law, drivers who want to get a CDL must:

  • Drivers must hold a class A, B, or C driver’s license in good standing and be able to complete the necessary knowledge tests to be eligible for and maintain a commercial learner permit for a minimum of 14 days.
  • Verify the sort of commercial vehicle they intend to drive and give the DMV a medical certification stating that they are in the minimum required physical condition.
  • Pay related CDL fees based on your license and type of vehicle.
  • Take a skills test that entails a vehicle check, a fundamental control test, and a real-world road test.

What Are Routing and Speed Limits Applicable to Large Commercial Trucks in NC?

According to NCDOT, there are various speed and routing limits in North Carolina depending on the county and the route. These limits include the following:

  • Commercial trucks with greater than three axles or a weight greater than 26,000 pounds are frequently forbidden from using the leftmost lanes on interstates.
  • Trucks that weigh more than 10,000 pounds must stop at truck information booths in some mountainous areas.
  • No through trucks are permitted at all in some places. Others forbid using trailers greater than 48 feet or trucks with three or more axles.

How Much Insurance Must a Commercial Truck Carry in North Carolina?

Federal law mandates that commercial truck drivers who use their vehicles for interstate or international commerce, transport non-hazardous products, and operate vehicles with GVWRs of 10,000 pounds or more carry a minimum of $750,000 in liability insurance.

Additionally, North Carolina mandates liability insurance minimums for state commercial drivers, as detailed below:

  • Transportation of hazardous goods, portable tanks with capacity greater than 3,500 gallons, toxic gasses, compressed liquefied gasses, or compressed gasses requires coverage of at least $5 million for commercial drivers.
  • A minimum of $1 million is required for drivers of trucks who transport oil or other substances that are classified as hazardous.
  • Coverage of $5 million or more for any drivers who transport any quantity of radioactive items or certain explosives.

What Is a Truck Driver’s Maximum Legal Blood Alcohol Level?

The legal blood alcohol limit for the majority of drivers in the state of North Carolina is 0.08 percent. The legal limit for commercial truck drivers is 0.04 percent due to the increased responsibility and danger involved with commercial driving.

North Carolina Truck Accident Attorney

Victims and their families may get some relief from what can seem like never-ending stress and worry if they hire a skilled truck accident attorney in North Carolina. Truck accident law firms assist their clients in taking control of their lives by offering victims and their families the sense that the legal aspect of their lives is under control. When truck accident attorneys promise that “we’ve got your back,” they truly mean it.

If you suffered injuries in a truck accident or lost a loved one, you should contact an experienced truck accident law firm as soon as possible. The sooner you choose a lawyer, the better they can represent you. A lawyer will have the best chance of clearly comprehending how the accident occurred and determining who is accountable for your injuries if they can begin their investigations as soon as possible. In order to obtain the most money out of your claim, you should file it as quickly as possible. To do this, you’ll need the aid of an experienced truck accident law firm. You will forfeit your rights if you wait too long.

Don’t wait to speak with a knowledgeable truck accident attorney in North Carolina if you or a loved one has been hurt by a commercial truck. Call Tatum & Atkinson, “the Heavy Hitters,” at (800) 529-0804 or contact us online to set up your case evaluation right away. A knowledgeable truck accident attorney will advocate for you in settlement talks with the insurance provider, go over your legal options with you, answer your questions, and work to get the best result for your case. Additionally, you owe Tatum & Atkinson, “the Heavy Hitters,” nothing unless we win.

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