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Rule may require truckers to have more extensive training

If a rule that was proposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is approved, Texas residents looking to become truck drivers may find that they will be required to undergo more training prior to receiving their license. The rule would require potential truck drivers to have at least 30 hours of behind-the-wheel training.

The proposal was unveiled by the FMCSA on March 4 and it was published March 7. If it is implemented, drivers would have to take a class that involves a theoretical component and a behind-the-wheel training component. The theoretical component would teach drivers how to perform vehicle inspections, how to operate the vehicle and how to operate the vehicle under certain road and weather conditions. Drivers would also learn how to identify fatigue and what to do if they become involved in a trucking accident. For the driving component, drivers would spend 10 hours on a course and at least 10 hours of driving on public roads.

Before this rule can be implemented, the agency must take public comments for 60 days. During this time, changes based on the feedback that was received can be made. The Department of Transportation and the White House's Office of Management and Budget would then have to approve the rule. Once this is done, the rule would be implemented in three years.

Lack of proper training and driver fatigue could result in serious truck accidents that could leave others with injuries. If a person does become injured due to an accident that was caused by a negligent truck driver, an attorney might assist in seeking compensation from both the driver and the trucking company for medical expenses and other losses.

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