When you work in the trucking industry as a driver, mechanic, freight handler, or independent contractor, safety is a priority, and dismissing safety rules can be deadly. Rather than risk your life or the lives of others, the right thing to do is report your company for safety violations. When you know about these violations, it is common to fear retribution if you say anything. Our experienced whistleblower attorneys could employ the law to protect you.

The Surface Transportation Assistance Act (STAA) Whistleblower Protection Provisions protects you after reporting violations or refusing to drive trucks that you know are unsafe under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. Reporting safety violations could save the lives of others on the road. Contact a Greenville trucking safety whistleblower lawyer to guide your journey.

How Employers Violate the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations

Requiring commercial truck drivers to perform any task that is unsafe according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations is a violation a whistleblower should report. Along with demands that a truck driver haul a load across country even during an illness, trucking companies violate the law by requiring drivers to continue driving:

  • In inclement weather
  • At dangerously high speeds to deliver cargo in less time
  • With overloaded cargo in violation of state or local laws
  • When the trip would violate the number of hours per day, the driver is permitted to drive
  • Without proper equipment, such as reflective devices, operational brakes, and coupling devices
  • When the driver has noted a serious mechanical defect in the log and the trucking company is not willing to fix it immediately

Many of these violations can be reported by persons in the trucking industry other than drivers. For example, a mechanic who is told to ignore faulty brakes can also be a whistleblower. A trucking safety whistleblower lawyer in Greenville could help an industry professional file a complaint.

Where Complaints are Filed

Whistleblowers must file their complaints with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) within 180 days of the violation. Under 49 United States Code § 31105(c), OSHA must decide whether to act on a whistleblower claim within 120 days, after which the complainant can file a federal lawsuit against the trucking company.

A trucking safety whistleblower attorney in Greenville could file an OSHA claim. They know what OSHA is looking for when they file the claim, and the lawyers at the Law Office of Bill Nettles could bring litigation in federal court if OSHA declines a case.

How the STAA Protects Whistleblowers

The STAA protects those in the trucking industry from being disciplined, discharged, or discriminated against for turning in their employers, under 49 U.S.C. § 31105(a)(1). Employers cannot retaliate when an employee has filed a complaint or is about to file one, or when the employer thinks the employee might file one in connection with commercial vehicle safety. Employers also cannot retaliate when truck drivers refuse to operate a commercial vehicle they have reason to believe is unsafe and puts them at risk for serious injuries. The driver must ask the employer to fix the hazard and the employer must refuse for STAA protection to kick in.

Retaliation is also forbidden when the trucking company employee cooperates or is about to cooperate, or when the employer believes cooperation is imminent concerning a safety or security matter involving the National Transportation Safety Board or Homeland Security. A trucking safety whistleblower lawyer in Greenville could ensure an employee follows all the steps to secure legal protection from retaliation.

Learn How a Greenville Trucking Safety Whistleblower Attorney Stands with You

Trucking companies that put profit over your safety as a driver, mechanic, or freight handler are also endangering the public when you are forced to perform your duties in an unsafe environment. Before that happens, you have the right to file a complaint with OSHA.

Our attorneys have decades of experience handling whistleblower claims and trucking safety attorneys handle more whistleblower cases than any other law firm in the state. Call us and let a Greenville trucking safety whistleblower lawyer stand with you.

Logo icon
Logo icon
Logo icon
Logo icon
Logo icon
Logo icon
Logo icon