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Drowsy Cab Drivers Pose a Risk to Others on NYC Roadways

April 8, 2016 Car Accidents

Taxi drivers and other professional drivers are supposed to be restricted by law from working too many hours.  Unfortunately, some drivers don’t obey the rules.  When a professional driver is on the road too long without rest, the driver can suffer from impairments that make him a danger behind the wheel. Drowsy driving has been demonstrated to have a similar impact on reflexes, reasoning, and judgment as driving under the influence of alcohol. Drowsy drivers are much more likely than well-rested motorists to get into a crash and hurt others.

If you were harmed by a tired taxi driver or other fatigued professional driver, it is important to determine all parties who could be held liable for your crash losses.  Victims should speak with an attorney at RMFW, a New York City car accident law firm, about whether they can pursue claims against professional drivers, employers, and others who could be held accountable for an injury or death caused by fatigued driving.

Exhausted Taxi Drivers Can Cause Crashes

The New York Post recently reported on one tragic incident in which a taxi driver was behind the wheel for way too long. The driver was overtired and unable to continue operating his vehicle safety. He ended up running over an 88-year-old grandmother as she was walking across the crosswalk.

The crash victim had the light and was crossing the road at the time the cab driver entered the intersection and struck her.  The cab driver was arrested and charged with failing to yield to a pedestrian.

When the cab driver was interviewed by law enforcement officers, he said he had been on the road in his cab since 9:00 AM. The incident in which the pedestrian was hit occurred at 12:40 AM the next day. This meant that the cab driver had been in the cab, working behind the wheel for almost 16 hours.  This is over the permissible limit, as cab drivers are not allowed to work for more than 12 hours under the law.

The son of the cab driver who struck the 88-year-old woman said that his father is a very hard worker and always does a 16-hour shift every Saturday. The driver has four children between the ages of 18 and 30 and he helps support his children by working four days a week. His Saturdays and Sundays are routinely taken up by long shifts in his cab.

Unfortunately, driving for 16 hours is likely to make anyone overtired and unable to effectively manage a vehicle. According to Drowsy Driving.org, being awake for 18 hours produces an impairment that is about the equivalent of having a .05 blood alcohol concentration.  Since a .08 percent BAC means the driver is breaking the law because he is too impaired to drive, a .05 percent BAC is indicative of a serious issue with safe driving abilities.

Cab drivers have to abide by the rules or can face consequences. The driver in this case has had his license suspended.  Victims could also pursue a civil case against drivers who hurt them, or companies who employ them, so the victim can be fully and fairly compensated. Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff attorneys can help victims make damage claims after drowsy driving accidents or other types of crashes occur. Call us today for help.