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Is a commercial driver's license an adequate safeguard?

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety's website, a commercial driver's license is required for drivers in certain categories.

One example is drivers who transport commerce -- interstate or intrastate. An additional endorsement is required for special types of commercial vehicles, such as a school bus or vehicle transporting hazardous materials. The endorsement will appear on the face of the commercial driver's license. 

An applicant for a commercial driver's license must provide documentation of various requirements, including a certification of medical status as well as the driver's successful result of a special driving test. Those additional requirements reflect the extra responsibility that comes with driving a tractor-trailer or transporting mass transit or school bus passengers. Yet are they providing enough of a safeguard?

In a recent example, investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board have requested the medical records of the driver of an 18-wheeler who crashed into a bus carrying softball players from North Central Texas College. Four of the players on the bus suffered fatal injuries.

The NTSB investigation may uncover results that prompt lawmakers to pass additional regulations. However, that process can be slow. In the meantime, the surviving family members may want some means to hold the driver accountable for his actions.

A wrongful death lawsuit is one way to seek justice in a tragedy like a truck accident. With the help of a skilled personal injury attorney, the surviving family members can investigate the causes of the crash. An attorney can utilize civil discovery techniques to get past uncooperative insurance representatives or trucking companies.

CBS, "NTSB Wants Records Of Texas Driver In Softball Team Bus Crash," Sept. 29, 2014

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