Many commercial trucks travel through Southaven regularly to transport cargo throughout the state and nationwide. Mississippi adheres to federal regulations, and when truckers or their employers fail to comply with the rules, they face penalties and civil liability.

You can take legal recourse and collect compensation if you suffered harm in an 18-wheeler collision due to the driver’s or company’s negligence. A skilled truck incident lawyer at the Law Office of David E. Gordon has extensive experience and can answer your questions about the federal trucking laws in Southaven.

Truck Driver Training and Qualifications

Individuals who wish to obtain their commercial driver’s license (CDL) and operate large commercial trucks must be at least 18 years old and pass written and practical skill tests. They must also pass a routine medical exam and have good driving histories. After a person obtains their CDL, they may find employment within the trucking industry and begin training.

Alcohol and Drug Testing

Mississippi laws promote a drug-free work environment in the trucking industry. To remain licensed and employed, truckers must pass pre-employment, post-accident, and random testing.


Federal and state regulations limit the maximum time truckers may drive during one shift or within each work week. During a free consultation in Southaven, an attorney knowledgeable about the federal trucking statutes could answer specific questions regarding compliance and qualifications.

Vehicle Maintenance and Inspections

Trucking companies must ensure heavy commercial vehicles receive regular inspections, maintenance, and repairs as well as keep records of service for verification.

Weight Limits

Federal and state laws impose restrictions on the maximum weight and size of heavy commercial vehicles for safety and infrastructure preservation. Tractor trailers exceeding the legal guidelines require additional time to stop, are more likely to roll over, and damage state roads, highways, and bridges.

Limitations depend on the vehicle type, size, and number of axles. The maximum allowable weight for a five-axle 18-wheeler without a permit granting an exception to the rule for special circumstances is 80,000 pounds.

License Classifications and Endorsements

The requirements to obtain a CDL in Southaven are the same as those provided by the Federal Highway Administration. According to the Mississippi Department of Public Safety, individuals may seek varying classifications and endorsements depending on their intentions and future job requirements.

  • Class A: Allows a person to obtain new employment with a trucking company and operate combination vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating, or GVWR, of over 26,000
  • Class B: Allows a person to operate a single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more
  • Class C: Allows a person to transport hazardous materials or carry 16 or more passengers
  • Class D: Allows a person to operate all other single or combination vehicles not included in Class A, B, or C

Those wishing to operate special commercial trucks—such as triple trailers, tanks, or combinations of tanks and trailers—must obtain CDL endorsements, which require additional training. Failure to comply with Southaven federal trucking regulations as required under the law can result in suspension or revocation of CDL, fines, and civil liability.

Discuss Federal Trucking Laws with a Southaven Attorney

If you were in an accident caused by non-compliance with federal and state statutes, you can hold the liable parties responsible for their actions. The trucking industry plays an essential role in transporting material and goods. Even so, the massive size of 18-wheelers makes accidents particularly severe and often deadly.

Therefore, drivers and their employers must help keep the roads and highways safe by adhering to the rules and regulations. An experienced lawyer can review each of the federal trucking laws in Southaven and help you prove one or more was broken by the truck driver or company, making them responsible for your losses. Call the Law Office of David E. Gordon today to schedule your free consultation.

The Law Offices of David E. Gordon

The Law Offices of David E. Gordon